Who Will Own the Forest?

Explore some of the info from the recently published “Future of America’s Forest and Rangelands” report

This relevant and important question is the theme for a respected national conference at the World Forestry Centre in Portland, Oregon next month.

Yet, the recently published “Future of America’s Forest and Rangelands” report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture provides some important information helping to answer the question.

The predominant ownership group is American family forest owners. They collectively control 39% of U.S. forestland. That makes small private owners collectively the largest ownership group of the 634 million acres of forest land. (The total excludes forest lands in interior Alaska.)

Here are some interesting other facts from the report, 58% of that family forest land is held in parcels of 100 acres or larger. Also, 58% of the owners say that their forest land ownership is “important” to them economically.

The report was published last month and projects forward for the likely path of U.S. forests to 2070. It predicts a small decline in total forest land over the next 50 years of 1-2%, mainly through development.

The entire report chapter on Forest Resources can be found here:


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