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Forest Sustainability Reporting in the United States
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Criteria & Indicators for Forest Sustainability

The Montréal Process Criteria and Indicators (MP C&I) characterize the essential components of sustainable forest management, and provide a framework for describing the value and condition of forests. These internationally agreed-upon criteria and indicators were developed collaboratively with other member countries as an intergovernmental response to the pressing need for sustainable forest management. The current status for each of the 64 indicators of forest sustainability in the United States is presented below.

Figure 2-1

The indicator briefs included below were compiled to produce the National Report on Sustainable Forests — 2010. We are currently updating the indicator briefs (as of November 2017) and will be posting them on this site in the coming months on a rolling basis. Click on each of the criteria below to view the relevant indicators. Some criteria may have subcriteria, as defined by the Montréal Process.

Criterion 1: Conservation of Biological Diversity

Describes the types of forest found in the United States, the area they inhabit, and the diversity of plants and animals found within them (9 indicators; view Criterion 1 summary from 2010 National Report).

click to expand or collapse Expand to view indicators for criterion 1

Criterion 2: Maintenance of Productive Capacity of Forest Ecosystems

Describes the capacity of our forests to produce products that are valued by society (5 indicators; view Criterion 2 summary from 2010 National Report).

click to expand or collapse Expand to view indicators for criterion 2

Criterion 3: Maintenance of Ecosystem Health and Vitality

Describes the health or our forests and the various disturbance processes that occur in them (2 indicators; view Criterion 3 summary from 2010 National Report).

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Criterion 4: Conservation and Maintenance of Soil and Water Resources

Describes the condition of soil and water in our forests and the steps we are taking to sustain these resources (5 indicators; view Criterion 4 summary from 2010 National Report).

click to expand or collapse Expand to view indicators for criterion 4

Criterion 5: Maintenance of Forest Contribution to Global Carbon Cycles

Measures the amount of carbon stored in our forests and in long-lasting wood products, and the amount of carbon emissions avoided through the use of wood for energy (3 indicators; view Criterion 5 summary from 2010 National Report).

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Criterion 6: Maintenance and Enhancement of Long-Term Multiple Socioeconomic Benefits To Meet the Needs of Societies

Describes the various social and economic aspects of forests in the United States, including (1) production and consumption of forest outputs; (2) investments in forests and the forest sector; (3) employment and forest communities; (4) recreation and tourism; and (5) the cultural and spiritual values associated with forests (20 indicators; view Criterion 6 summary from 2010 National Report).

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Subcriterion. Production & Consumption

Subcriterion. Investment in the Forest Sector

Subcriterion. Employment & Community Needs

Subcriterion. Recreation & Tourism

Subcriterion. Cultural, Social & Spiritual Needs & Values

Criterion 7: Legal, Institutional, and Economic Framework for Forest Conservation and Sustainable Management

Describes the laws, policies and institutions that help determine forest management in the United States (20 indicators; view Criterion 7 summary from 2010 National Report).

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Subcriterion. Extent to Which the Legal Framework Supports Sustainable Forest Management

Subcriterion. Extent to Which the Institutional Framework Supports Sustainable Management

Subcriterion. Extent to Which the Economic Framework Supports Sustainable Management

Subcriterion. Capacity To Measure and Monitor Changes in Sustainable Management of Forests

Subcriterion. Research and Development Capacity Aimed at Improving Forest Management

Source: National Report on Sustainable Forests — 2010