Category Archive: Blog


Helping Forests Face Climate Change

By Lizzie Wasilewska In its new guide, Climate Change Guidelines for Forest Managers, the Food and Agriculture Organization on the United Nations (FAO) discusses many ways of combating and thinking about the effects of climate change on forests. As Michelle emphasized in her recent blog entry about the SAFE Act, early efforts to prevent, rather […]

Creating SAFE Noise

By Michelle Werts Today, American Forests is on the Hill — Capitol Hill that is — co-hosting a briefing and panel discussion titled “Protecting the Economy and Communities: Shared Risks, Shared Responsibility in Planning for the Effects of Climate Change.” Being held in one of the Senate office buildings, this briefing aims to build support […]

Tree Frogs’ Descent

When I was little, one of my favorite books was a picture book about rainforests that took the reader through all the layers of the tropical rainforest — from the ground on up to the canopy — and the plants and animals that live there. The idea that entire worlds existed one on top of […]

A Sand-filled Anniversary

By Lizzie Wasilewska Today is the anniversary of one of the most biologically and geologically unique parks in the U.S.: Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. In addition to its famous desert dunes, Great Sand Dunes includes grasslands and wetlands; lakes, rivers and streams; tundra; and forests that spread from the desert’s edges to […]

Saving a Little, Getting a Lot

By Michelle Werts How’s this for a bargain: By protecting 17 percent of the world’s land, we can preserve 67 percent of the world’s plant species. Not such a bad return on investment, eh? A new study published last week in Science revealed that two goals set by the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity in […]

Giving Butterflies a Boost

The world’s monarch butterflies now fit into an area smaller than four football fields. Last March, we told you about how pesticides used in Canada and the U.S. are killing the milkweed the monarchs need to survive their long journey. A new study published in Conservation Biology details how another cause has aided the pesticides […]

It’s Our Party!

By Michelle Werts It’s one of those eternal questions: Is a birthday a time for celebrating the past or for looking with hope to the future? Then again, why can’t it be a little bit of both? Today, American Forests turns 138. We were born in Chicago thanks to Dr. John Aston Warder, a medical […]

Making Sense of the Weather of 2012

New research published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society is helping to determine the role that climate change may have played in a number of 2012’s most extreme weather events. Seventy-eight meteorologists, working in several teams, analyzed the likelihood of the weather events under different models: those representing current levels of atmospheric greenhouse […]

The Need for Urban Parks

By Michelle Werts I’m one of those people who remember very little of their childhoods. I have vague impressions of events and activities, but very little that is concrete. Among those “little” things, though, of which I have a crystal-clear memory are my childhood parks and playgrounds. I can picture the grove of trees where […]

Calculating Your Green Home

Last month, we joined our friends, American Rivers, in helping to spread the news of the importance of green infrastructure and encourage the EPA to update its approach to managing stormwater runoff. Green infrastructure, which is part of the urban forest, captures rainwater and allows it to be absorbed into trees, roots and soil, rather […]