Photo: Neil Moralee via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
In October 2020, the Trump administration finalized a forest service rule granting an exception to the Roadless Rule, which is a 2001 federal regulation enacted by the Clinton administration.and protect almost 60 million acres of roadless areas nationally from road building, road reconstruction and logging. By granting this exception, the Trump administration opened up 9.2 million acres of the Tongass to development and logging. The Tongass is the largest National Forest in the United States and is one of our best natural tools in fighting global warming by absorbing and storing carbon dioxide, a process known as carbon sequestration. But it can only help fight global warming if we don’t chop down the trees.
Environment American has joined other environmental groups in calling on the Biden administration to protect the Tongass National Forest as part of their commitment to fighting climate change. Protecting the Tongass would be a low-effort, high-reward method of reducing our emissions as a nation.
Below are some fast facts about how forests work to stop global warming, and why the Tongass is so important.
Forests, especially old forests, work to stop global warming.
One-third of humanity’s carbon emissions are absorbed by such terrestrial ecosystems as tundra, taigas, temperate deciduous forests, tropical rainforests, grasslands and deserts.
Simply put, the Tongass needs protection right now.
Environment America interns Ryan Harrison and Caitlin Clancy contributed to this fact sheet