Action Alert: More Trees, Please! Let’s work together to improve Maryland’s Forest Conservation Act

We love trees—they provide food and shelter for wildlife, filter pollution, provide cleaner air and cooler summer temperatures, increase property values, and reduce polluted runoff. But developers in Maryland are clearing forests at an unsustainable rate.

Maryland’s Forest Conservation Act (FCA) is supposed to protect forests from overdevelopment. But the Forest Conservation Act needs dramatic improvement. The law has slowed forest clearance during some development but in areas where development pressure is intense and forests are considerable, builders have cut down more than 40 percent of the forests, on average. Few, if any, acres are replanted.

Use the form below to contact your state legislators and tell them how valuable trees are to our environment, economy, and way of life. Tell them we need more trees and ask them to update the Forest Conservation Act to protect our most ecologically valuable forests.

Here are some talking points you could include in your letter:

  • Trees are the backbone of our communities. They help filter our local waters, increase property values, reduce energy costs, provide clean air and wildlife habitat, and improve public health.
  • Maryland’s Forest Conservation Act (FCA), a 24-year-old Maryland law, requires builders to preserve the best forests on development sites. The law has slowed forest clearance during some development, but in areas where development pressure is intense and forests are considerable, builders have cut down more than 40 percent of the forests, on average. Few, if any, of these valuable acres are replanted.
  • These intact forests are the places that provide the best habitat for forest-dwelling animals and birds, and shelter rare and precious plants, and do the hard work of cleaning our water and air. Forests are the lungs of the earth, and the intent of any law called the Forest Conservation Act should be to actually conserve forests, not allow them to be cut down for subdivisions and not replaced!
  • There are many ways we could improve the FCA and save more forests from bulldozers.
  • Please update the Forest Conservation Act to protect Maryland’s most ecologically vulnerable forests!

About Eliza Cava

Eliza Cava is the ANS Director of Conservation, where she leads our MD & DC policy, advocacy, and conservation outreach work, supervises our citizen science programs and VA advocacy work, and supports Woodend restoration as a demonstration landscape for the region.

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