Forested land with river running through
Forested land at Susquehanna State Park (Photo by Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program with aerial support by Southwings)

Upcoming Meetings

Scope and Purpose

The Forestry Workgroup coordinates, develops and implements plans and projects which focus on the contributions of forest lands in restoring the health and productivity of the Chesapeake Bay watershed and in retaining their economic potential. The workgroup provides a forum to discuss issues and identify opportunities among the forestry community, interested individuals and organizations, and federal, state and local governments.

Objectives:

  • Enhance communication and education regarding forestry issues within the Bay watershed.
  • Identify the need and opportunities for demonstration projects and program development.
  • Promote the establishment and management of forests and trees in urban, rural, and developing areas to improve water quality, and aquatic and terrestrial habitats associated with the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
  • Promote forestry research and monitoring needed to evaluate forestcontributions toward protection and restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Ensure that forest resource information pertinent to the Chesapeake Bay is available to individuals and organizations interested and/or involved in implementing the Chesapeake Bay Program.

The Forestry Workgroup also is pursuing the 2014 Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement goal and outcomes to:

Vital Habitats Goal: Restore, enhance and protect a network of land and water habitats to support fish and wildlife and to afford other public benefits, including water quality, recreational uses and scenic value across the watershed.

  • Forest Buffer Outcome: Continually increase the capacity of forest buffers to provide water quality and habitat benefits throughout the watershed. Restore 900 miles per year of riparian forest buffer and conserve existing buffers until at least 70 percent of riparian areas throughout the watershed are forested.
  • Tree Canopy Outcome: Continually increase urban tree canopy capacity to provide air quality, water quality and habitat benefits throughout the watershed. Expand urban tree canopy by 2,400 acres by 2025.

Projects and Resources

Chesapeake Riparian Forest Buffer 2022 Leadership Workshop

The Chesapeake Bay Program convened the 2022 Chesapeake Riparian Forest Buffer Leadership Workshop at the request of the Management Board’s Outcome Attainability Team. The objectives of the workshop were to 1) discuss state RFB Action Strategies for increasing the rate of forest buffer restoration and 2) develop recommendations for specific roles for the Partnership in advancing buffer goals.

To view the Chesapeake Riparian Forest Buffer 2022 Leadership Workshop page use this link.

To view Webinar 1: Technical assistance, outreach and social science for Riparian Forest Buffers use this link.

To view Webinar 2: Policy and funding/financing for Riparian Forest Buffers use this link.

Chesapeake Forest Restoration Strategy

The Forestry Workgroup revised and updated the original Chesapeake Forest Restoration Strategy in 2020. The Strategy lays out broad priorities and actions that will guide forestry partnership efforts in the years ahead and was the basis for a Shared Stewardship agreement signed in October 2020 by all of the watershed’s seven state foresters and the Chief of the US Forest Service.

Natural Filters Restoration Program: Concept For the Chesapeake

Watch the recorded webinar on this proposed program, and view the presentation below.

Buffers in the Farm Bill: What does CLEAR 30 mean for the Bay?

Webinar on CLEAR 30 with experts Terry Noto and Mike Linisinbigler. A new provision in the 2018 Farm Bill, CLEAR 30 is now open and the Chesapeake is a pilot region. Expiring buffers can be enrolled in CLEAR 30 – it is a 30 year contract and maintenance is paid for. Watch the recording here.

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Publications

Forestry Workgroup BMP Verification Guidance

This section describes guidance on how to verify the existence and performance of forestry BMPs in the Bay watershed. It has been revised since the 2014 version to incorporate comments and also to reflect the high-resolution imagery data that has become available.

Download publication

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WIP Forestry BMP Packet

The Forestry Workgroup created “A Guide for Forestry Practices in Chesapeake TMDL” to help localities, conservation agencies, community groups, states, and others planning and implementing best management practices (BMPs) during the Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP) process. Forests are the best land use for protecting water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed and forest BMPs are some of the most cost-effective for Bay restoration. This guide will show the value of forest retention and tree plantings, convey information about the various forest BMPs in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Model, and provide examples of forest BMP scenarios in the Chesapeake Assessment Scenario Tool (CAST) to show partners what information is available, where to find it, and how to use it.

Download publication

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Riparian Forest Buffer Management Strategy

This management strategy identifies approaches for achieving the following outcome: Continually increase the capacity of forest buffers to provide water quality and habitat benefits throughout the watershed. Restore 900 miles per year of riparian forest buffer and conserve existing buffers until 70 percent of riparian areas throughout the watershed are forested.

Download publication

View details
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Watershed Agreement

Vital Habitats Goal

Members

Rebecca Hanmer (Chair), Retired
Address:
138 Caroline Street
Fredericksburg, Virginia 22401

Email:  rwhanmer@yahoo.com
Phone:  (540) 371-8787
Sally Claggett (Coordinator), Program Coordinator, U.S. Forest Service (USFS)
Address:
1750 Forest Drive Suite 130
Suite 209
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  sclaggett@fs.fed.us
Phone:  (410) 267-5706
Sophie Waterman (Staffer), Maintain Healthy Watersheds Goal Implementation Team Staffer, Chesapeake Research Consortium
Address:
1750 Forrest Drive, Suite 130
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  swaterman@chesapeakebay.net
Phone:  (410) 267-5704
Frank Rodgers, Executive Director, Cacapon Institute
Address:
Cacapon Institute
10 Rock Ford Rd
Great cacapon, Westvirginia 25422

Email:  frodgers@cacaponinstitute.org
Anne Hairston-Strang, Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Address:
580 Taylor Avenue
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  anne.hairston-strang@maryland.gov
Phone:  (410) 260-8509
Craig Highfield, Forestry for the Bay Program Manager, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay
Address:
1750 Forest Drive Suite 130
Suite 209
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  chighfield@allianceforthebay.org
Phone:  (410) 267-5723
Judy Okay, Virginia Department of Agriculture & Forestry
Address:
tbd
Tbd, Virginia tbd

Email:  judyannokay@gmail.com
Matthew Keefer, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (PA DCNR)
Address:
P.O. Box 8767
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17105

Email:  makeefer@pa.gov
Phone:  (717) 214-3814
Kesha Braunskill, Delaware Forest Service
Address:
2320 South DuPont Highway
Dover, Delaware 19901

Email:  kesha.braunskill@state.de.us
Lauren Townley, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Address:
625 Broadway
Albany, Newyork 12233

Email:  lauren.townley@dec.ny.gov
Phone:  (518) 402-8283
Julie Mawhorter, Mid-Atlantic Urban and Community Forestry Coordinator, U.S. Forest Service (USFS)
Address:
151 Grey Towers Dr.
Milford, Pennsylvania 18337

Email:  julie.mawhorter@usda.gov
Phone:  (570) 296-9626
Katie Brownson, Watershed Specialist, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Forest Service (USFS)
Address:
1750 Forest Drive Suite 130
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  Katherine.Brownson@usda.gov
Caitlin Verdu, Virginia Department of Forestry
Address:
Virginia Department of Forestry 900 Natural Resources Drive
Suite 800
Charlottesville, Virginia 22903

Email:  caitlin.verdu@dof.virginia.gov
Terrance Lasher, Virginia Department of Forestry
Address:
Virginia Department of Forestry 900 Natural Resources Drive
Suite 800
Charlottesville, Virginia 22903

Email:  terry.lasher@dof.virginia.gov
Rosalie Santerre, West Virginia Division of Forestry
Address:
PO Box 245
Franklin, Westvirginia 26807

Email:  rosalie.santerre@wv.gov
Iris Allen, Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Address:
Maryland Department of Natural Resources 580 Taylor Avenue
Tawes State Office Building
Annapolis, Maryland 21401

Email:  iris.allen@maryland.gov
Patti Webb, Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control
Address:
Richardson & Robbins Building
89 Kings Hwy SW
Dover, Delaware 19901

Email:  Patti.Webb@delaware.gov
Jeremy McGill, West Virginia Division of Forestry
Address:
61 5th Street
Building 1 Suite 201
Buckhannon, Westvirginia 26201

Email:  Jeremy.R.McGill@wv.gov
Jim Woodworth, District of Columbia Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE)
Address:
1200 First St NE
Washington, Districtofcolumbia 20002

Email:  james.woodworth@dc.gov
Robert Corletta, District of Columbia Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE)
Address:
1200 First St NE
Washington, Districtofcolumbia 20002

Email:  robert.corletta@dc.gov
Lydia Brinkley, Upper Susquehanna Coalition
Address:
183 Corporate Dr
Owego, Newyork 13827

Email:  lbrinkley@u-s-c.org
William Byrum, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
Address:
2901 E. Gate City Blvd.
Suite 2100
Greensboro, Northcarolina 27401

Email:  william.byrum@usda.gov