Locust Stake Outing with Georgia ForestWatch, Forest Service, Southern Environmental Law Center photo by Laura Stachler

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Keeping an eye on our forests

Since 1986, Georgia ForestWatch volunteers, our District Leaders, have kept watch over the 867,510 acres of the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests. Over that time we have learned to use the laws that regulate USDA Forest Service management of national forests. We now find ourselves as the only organization in Georgia uniquely equipped to navigate this complex bureaucracy in support of our forests.

How we watch the U.S. Forest Service

Georgia ForestWatch exists to preserve, protect and restore the 867,510-acre Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forests. We are the collective voice of hundreds of people just like you who want to make sure our children’s grandchildren have healthy, natural forests and clean streams to enjoy.

Because all citizens own the national forests, we have a say in how they are managed, but the pathways to getting heard are complex and difficult to navigate. Georgia ForestWatch has almost 30 years experience in navigating the public comment process and bureaucracy of the U.S. Forest Service.

Many people think our national forests are fully protected, like national parks, but over 50% of the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest is still open to logging and destructive road-building. As a ForestWatch member, you’ll learn how to make a difference, and we’ll have fun in the process—taking time to get out and enjoy the woods.

Please join now. It’s affordable and you will connect with many other ForestWatchers committed to protecting the people’s forests. United with one voice, we serve as a formidable advocate for protecting our beloved mountains, clean streams and world-class biodiversity.

Overview of the laws that affect our work

➜ Go here for a document explaining the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and our process.

Be an advocate – learn more about the NEPA Process

The NEPA process is extremely complex. The below examples are “snapshots” of NEPA in action here at Georgia ForestWatch. Each is a glimpse at one step of a much larger process in which ForestWatch has been participating, meeting, collaborating and commenting. The following links are U.S. Forest Service proposals and Georgia ForestWatch’s response.