Insect and Disease Area Designations

Section 8204 of the Agricultural Act of 2014 directs within 60 days of enactment, the Secretary shall, if requested by the Governor, designate at least one landscape-scale area in at least one national forest as part of an insect and disease treatment program in each State that is experiencing an insect or disease epidemic. After the end of the 60-day period, the Secretary may designate additional landscape-scale areas as needed to address insect or disease threats.

On March 19, 2014, a letter from the Chief was sent to Governors of States with national forests and Puerto Rico informing them of the opportunity to request insect and disease area designations in their State to address insect and disease infestations. Requests were due from the States by April 8, 2014 (60 days from enactment). In total, thirty-six states responded to request designations.

In order to be eligible for designation, an area must meet certain requirements. Any areas designated must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • the area is experiencing declining forest health based on annual forest health surveys, or
  • the area is at risk of experiencing substantially increased tree mortality over the next 15 years due to insect and disease infestation based on the National Insect and Disease Risk Map, or
  • the area is in an area where hazard trees pose imminent risk to public infrastructure, health or safety.

The Forest Service evaluated the requests from each State against the required criteria using a three part process. First, areas were validated against the annual Aerial Insect & Disease Detection Surveys completed in 2013 and the composite Insect and Disease Risk as projected by the National Insect and Disease Risk Map 2013-2037. Second, if an area was not identified on either the Aerial Insect & Disease Detection Surveys or the composite Insect and Disease Risk as projected by the National Insect and Disease Risk Map, the area was further evaluated using individual risk maps for specific insects or diseases by host to determine if an area was at risk based on a particular species and host. Lastly, areas that did not meet at least one of the above criteria were evaluated to determine if hazard trees were present that posed an imminent risk to public health, infrastructure, and safety. If an area met at least one of the three criteria, it was considered eligible for designation.

In response to the State’s requests, the Chief designated approximately 46.7 million acres of National Forest System lands across 36 States that are either already experiencing or are at risk of experiencing insect and disease infestations. The designations exclude Wilderness and Wilderness Study Areas. In the table below, you will find the initial designations requested by each State and the official areas designated within that State as well as additional designations after the initial 60 days. The total designated areas is approximately 75.3 million acres, as of August 8th, 2019.

The designated areas will not immediately result in treatment, nor are the designations a commitment to treat all acres within designated areas. Designated areas will be further evaluated in an open, transparent and collaborative manner to identify potential projects that reduce the risk or extent of, or increase resilience to insect and disease infestations. Additionally, these designations do not change or exempt the Forest Service from complying with any other existing law, regulation and policy such as the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act, National Historic Preservation Act, agency Roadless Rules, and any other applicable law, regulation, and/or policy that affects the designated areas. The designations also do not come with any new funding. While the Farm Bill authorized up to $200 million dollars annually, no money has been appropriated. Any projects that are accomplished within designated areas will be funded with existing funding.

The Forest Service will continue to place priority on increasing the pace and scale of restoration. These designations will provide useful tools to plan insect and disease treatment projects more efficiently in designated areas through streamlined NEPA procedures, as we seek to increase the pace and scale of restoration across the National Forest System as a whole. These designations bolster the agency’s ability to accomplish restoration projects that not only combat insect and disease threats, but reduce the risks of catastrophic wildfire and impacts from invasive species. The Forest Service will work with States, Tribes, partners, and stakeholders to develop and implement projects in the designated areas. Collaborative approaches and early stakeholder engagement will continue, as well as involving the public in an open and transparent manner.

More information on NEPA: Does NEPA apply to Section 602 Designations (PDF)?

Designated Areas under Section 602 of the Healthy Forest Restoration Act (HFRA) of 2003
State Chief's Letter to the Governors State's and Forest Service Region's Request Designated Areas
Alabama Honorable Robert Bentley (PDF, 389 KB) Designation Request Alabama (ZIP, 2.67 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 684 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 338 KB)
Alaska Honorable Sean Parnell (PDF, 380 KB) Designation Request Alaska (ZIP, 3.6 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 385 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 678 KB)
Arizona Honorable Jan Brewer (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request Arizona (ZIP, 4.2 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 274 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 413 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 2-28-2017 (PDF, 45 KB)
Designation Letter 6-12-2017 (PDF, 1 MB)
Designation Map 5-22-2017 (PDF, 475 KB)

Arkansas Honorable Mike Beebe (PDF, 428 KB) Designation Request Arkansas (ZIP, 3.3 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 273 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 352 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 11-13-2017 (PDF, 52 KB)
Designation Letter 2-7-2018 (PDF, 71 KB)
Designation Map 12-19-2017 (PDF, 550 KB)

California Honorable Edmund Brown (PDF, 375 KB) Designation Request California (ZIP, 6.2 MB)
Designation Request Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region (PDF, 168 KB)
Designation Letter California (PDF, 294 KB)
Designation Letter Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region (PDF, 575 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 495 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 3-8-2017 (PDF, 72 KB)
Designation Letter 7-18-2017 (PDF, 1.4 MB)
Designation Map 6-21-2017 (PDF, 783 KB)

Colorado Honorable John Hickenlooper (PDF, 381 KB) Designation Request Colorado (ZIP, 80 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 281 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 557 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 3-16-2016 (PDF, 661 KB)
Designation Letter 6-27-2016 (PDF, 81 KB)
Designation Map 5-5-2016 (PDF, 869 KB)

Florida Honorable Rick Scott (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request Florida (ZIP, 283 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 290 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 396 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 2-9-2019 (PDF, 51 KB)
Designation Letter 7-19-2019 (PDF, 79 KB)
Designation Map 7-19-2019 (PDF, 427 KB)

Georgia Honorable Nathan Deal (PDF, 422 KB) Designation Request Georgia (ZIP, 895 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 376 KB)
Idaho Honorable C.L. "Butch" Otter (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request Idaho (ZIP, 75.0 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 286 KB)
Designation Adjustment Letter (PDF, 638 KB)
Designation Correction Letter (PDF, 856 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 285 KB)

Additional Northern Region:
Request Letter 5-25-2017 (PDF, 157 KB)
Request Letter 6-14-2016 (PDF, 808 KB)
Designation_Letter_9-13-2017 (PDF, 34 KB)
Designation Letter 12-16-2016 (PDF, 407 KB)
Designation Map 11-4-2016 (PDF, 271 KB)

Additional Intermountain Region:
Request Letter 7-25-2017 (PDF, 1.7 MB)
Request Letter 4-12-2016 (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Request Letter 11-22-2016 (PDF, 768 KB)
Designation Letter 9-22-2017 (PDF, 143 KB)
Designation Letter 6-22-2016 (PDF, 68 KB)
Designation Letter 3-2-2017 (PDF, 481 KB)
Designation Map 1-6-2017 (PDF, 291 KB)
Designation Map 3-15-2017 (PDF, 403 KB)
Designation Map 8-28-2017 (PDF, 464 KB)
Request Letter 4-5-2018 (PDF, 2.7 MB)
Request Letter 5-4-2018 (PDF, 1.6 MB)
Request Letter 4-27-2018 (PDF, 1.7 MB)
Designation Letter 8-24-2018 (PDF, 37 KB)
Designation Map 8-24-2018 (PDF, 595 KB)

Illinois Honorable Pat Quinn (PDF, 376 KB) No Response Additional:
Request Letter 5-14-2019 (PDF, 694 KB)
Designation Letter 8-6-2019 (PDF, 150 KB)
Designation Map 8-6-2019 (PDF, 304 KB)
Indiana Honorable Mike Pence (PDF, 374 KB) Designation Request Indiana (ZIP, 8.0 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 314 KB)
Kentucky Honorable Steven L. Beshear (PDF, 380 KB) Designation Request Kentucky (ZIP, 3.2 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 354 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 6-30-2016 (PDF, 49 KB)
Designation Letter 9-28-2016 (PDF, 488 KB)
Designation Map 9-16-2016 (PDF, 245 KB)

Louisiana Honorable Bobby Jindal (PDF, 382 KB) Designation Request Louisiana (ZIP, 39 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 493 KB)
Maine Honorable Paul LePage (PDF, 379 KB) No Response Not Applicable
Michigan Honorable Rick Snyder (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request Michigan (ZIP, 1.8 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 273 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 492 KB)
Minnesota Honorable Mike Dayton (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request Minnesota (ZIP, 316 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 269 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 363 KB)
Mississippi Honorable Phil Bryant (PDF, 382 KB) Designation Request Mississippi (ZIP, 10.1 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 273 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 257 KB)
Designation Letter Forest Service Southern Region (PDF, 34 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 326 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 3-20-2017 (PDF, 7.2 MB)
Designation Letter 8-16-2017 (PDF, 34 KB)
Designation Map 7-17-2017 (PDF, 323 KB)

Missouri Honorable Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request Missouri (ZIP, 1.0 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 273 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 365 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 11-2-2015 (PDF, 861 KB)
Designation Letter 3-18-2016 (PDF, 417 KB)
Designation Map 2-3-2016 (PDF, 335 KB)

Montana Honorable Steve Bullock (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request Montana (ZIP, 480.1 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 267 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 623 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 9-21-2015 (PDF, 94 KB)
Designation Letter 3-1-2016 (PDF, 1.2 MB)
Designation Map 3-1-2016 (PDF, 763 KB)

Nebraska Honorable Dave Heineman (PDF, 379 KB) No Response Not Applicable
Nevada Honorable Brian Sandoval (PDF, 383 KB) Designation Request Nevada (ZIP, 2.1 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 271 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 399 KB)
New Hampshire Honorable Maggie Hassan (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request New Hampshire (ZIP, 1.2 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 282 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 347 KB)
New Mexico Honorable Susana Martinez (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request New Mexico (ZIP, 82 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 261 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 399 KB)
New York Honorable Andrew Cuomo (PDF, 381 KB) Designation Request New York (ZIP, 53 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 269 KB)
North Carolina Honorable Pat McCrory (PDF, 381 KB) Designation Request North Carolina (ZIP, 2.7 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 274 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 492 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 12-14-2017 (PDF, 67 KB)
Designation Letter 3-29-2018 (PDF, 2 MB)
Designation Map 1-30-2018 (PDF, 502 KB)

North Dakota Honorable Jack Dalrvmple (PDF, 381 KB) No Response Not Applicable
Ohio Honorable John Kasich (PDF, 432 KB) No Response Designation Letter (PDF, 248 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 181 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 8-6-2015 (PDF, 406 KB)
Designation Letter 1-15-2016 (PDF, 417 KB)
Designation Map 12-3-2015 (PDF, 289 KB)

Oklahoma Honorable Mary Fallin (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request Oklahoma (ZIP, 544 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 274 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 366 KB)
Designation Letter Forest Service Southern Region (PDF, 34 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 340 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 3-20-2017 (PDF, 2.8 MB)
Designation Letter 8-16-2017 (PDF, 34 KB)
Designation Map 7-25-2017 (PDF, 327 KB)

Oregon Honorable John Kitzhaber (PDF, 375 KB) Designation Request Oregon (ZIP, 5.4 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 269 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 570 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 3-24-2017 (PDF, 315 KB)
Request Letter 10-20-2015 (PDF, 604 KB)
Designation Letter 6-22-2016 (PDF, 110 KB)
Designation Letter 3-18-2016 (PDF, 79 KB)
Designation Map 2-3-2016 (PDF, 326 KB)
Designation Map 2-4-2016 (PDF, 255 KB)
Request Letter 4-19-2019 (PDF, 58 KB)
Designation Letter 7-25-2019 (PDF, 174 KB)
Designation Map 5-10-2019 (PDF, 463 KB)

Pennsylvania Honorable Tom Corbett (PDF, 432 KB) Designation Request Pennsylvania (ZIP, 169 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 271 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 292 KB)
Puerto Rico Honorable Alejandro Garcia Padilla (PDF, 431 KB) No Response Not Applicable
South Carolina Honorable Nikki R. Haley (PDF, 376 KB) Designation Request South Carolina (ZIP, 53 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 272 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 372 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 2-3-2017 (PDF, 50 KB)
Designation Letter 5-31-2017 (PDF, 56 KB)
Designation Map 5-20-2017 (PDF, 365 KB)

South Dakota Honorable Dennis Daugaard (PDF, 379 KB) Designation Request South Dakota (ZIP, 2.3 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 278 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 494 KB)
Tennessee Honorable Bill Haslam (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request Tennessee (ZIP, 8.5 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 266 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 278 KB)
Designation Correction Letter (PDF, 397 KB)
Designation Correction Map (PDF, 240 KB)
Texas Honorable Rick Perry (PDF, 376 KB) Designation Request Texas (ZIP, 1.7 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 266 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 445 KB)
Utah Honorable Gary R. Herbert (PDF, 426 KB) Designation Request Utah (ZIP, 70 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 271 KB)
Designation Adjustment Letter (PDF, 346 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 262 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 1-6-2016 (PDF, 1 MB)
Designation Letter 5-1-2017 (PDF, 380 KB)
Designation Map 3-15-2017 (PDF, 362 KB)
Request Letter 4-23-2018 (PDF, 735 KB)
Designation Letter 8-24-2018 (PDF, 37 KB)
Designation Map 8-24-2018 (PDF, 415 KB)

Vermont Honorable Peter Shumlin (PDF, 377 KB) Designation Request Vermont (ZIP, 77 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 267 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 344 KB)
Virginia Honorable Terry McAuliffe (PDF, 380 KB) Designation Request Virginia (ZIP, 188 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 267 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 492 KB)
Washington Honorable Jay Inslee (PDF, 428 KB) Designation Request Washington (ZIP, 53 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 450 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 322 KB)
West Virginia Honorable Earl Ray Tomblin (PDF, 380 KB) Designation Request West Virgina (ZIP, 157 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 269 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 392 KB)
Wisconsin Honorable Scott Walker (PDF, 375 KB) Designation Request Wisconsin (ZIP, 935 KB) Designation Letter (PDF, 276 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 372 KB)
Wyoming Honorable Matthew "Matt" Mead (PDF, 451 KB) Designation Request Wyoming (ZIP, 6.5 MB) Designation Letter (PDF, 273 KB)
Designation Map (PDF, 403 KB)

Additional:
Request Letter 12-16-2016 (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Designation Letter 3-22-2017 (PDF, 1.1 MB)
Designation Map 2-23-2017 (PDF, 432 KB)
Request Letter 01-17-2018 (PDF, 65 KB)
Designation Letter 04-11-2018 (PDF, 64 KB)
Designation Map 02-01-2018 (PDF, 504 KB)

National Not Applicable Not Applicable National Designation Map (PDF, 1.1 MB)

Additional:
Designation Map 8-22-2017 (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Designation Map 1-5-2018 (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Designation Map 2-1-2018 (PDF, 1.4 MB)
Designation Map 10-1-2018 (PDF, 1.1 MB)