Implementing a Vision: Longleaf Pine Ecosystem Restoration in South Carolina
Steve Moore, Director of Climate & Energy, South Carolina Wildlife Federation
The South Carolina Wildlife Federation recently partnered with the National Wildlife Federation and the US Fish and Wildlife Service to assist in implementing the vision of the Range-wide Conservation Plan for Longleaf Pine ecosystems with the full spectrum of ecological, economic and social values.
SCWF and NWF will work with land trusts in the areas surrounding the Francis Marion National Forest (FMNF) and will reach out to African American Leaders and landowners in the low country area to accelerate progress in longleaf pine conservation. SCWF and NWF project will utilize a mix of technical workshops, field days, public agency personnel including NRCS and consulting foresters.
The coastal plain of South Carolina was once the home of extensive longleaf pine forests. These forests provided quality timber and other forest products to generations of South Carolinians. During the last century much of this ecosystem was destroyed and replaced with short rotation pine species to supply the pulpwood market. This resulted in a loss of habitat for many indigenous species of plants and animals. Restoring longleaf pine forests will help restore these species, mitigate the impacts of climate change on many species, and provide more and better opportunities for landowners to manage their forest for multiple objectives including income opportunities for wood and fiber products, biodiversity, recreation, wilderness and wildlife, carbon sequestration, and biomass. SCWF is committed to encouraging the restoration of this ecosystem, especially with small landowners.