Woman walking through a forest. Six paired images showing three landscapes in before and after scenes, including a stream, forest, and road stream crossing. A group of resource officials and partners having a discussion in a pine forest. A mountain lake and forest scene. Bark beetle inset on a lake and forest scene. The forest is red, which are dead trees killed by bark beetles.

Restoration means creating and maintaining healthy, resilient forests capable of delivering all the benefits that people get from them—clean air and water, carbon sequestration, habitat for native fish and wildlife, forest products, opportunities for outdoor recreation, and more. When we restore our Nation’s forests, we create jobs in rural communities and benefit the environment at the same time.

Climate change, catastrophic wildfire, bark beetle infestation, invasive species, record droughts, and other stressors threaten the health of our forest and watersheds, and the people that rely on them. With our valuable state, tribal, local government, and private partners we are working hard to increase the rate of restoration in the face of these mounting challenges. We use an all-lands approach, because we know that problems do not stop at forest boundaries, and we work every day to restore the ecological integrity our forests need to be healthy now and into the future.

Explore the links to the left to see how we are restoring public lands by implementing programs, supporting communities, utilizing frameworks, and mitigating threats.

The Forest Service recently released an update about its accelerated restoration efforts: From Accelerating Restoration to Creating and Maintaining Resilient Landscapes and Communities Across the Nation (PDF, 18.1 MB).

Additional Background Information

“Our shared vision begins with restoration. Restoration means managing forest lands first and foremost to protect our water resources, while making our forests more resilient to climate change.”

~ USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack

“We will increase our focus on restoration of our forest and grassland ecosystems; restoration to increase resilience to ensure these systems are able to adapt to changes in climate.”

~ Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell