Asian Longhorned Beetle

Asian longhorned beetle. Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

Forests are under attack from invasive species, diseases and unprecedented outbreak of pests, while trying to withstand stress caused by climate change and drought. The Midwest is fighting is the invasive species emerald ash borer, which is killing tens of millions of ash trees. New England has seen tens of thousands of trees succumb to the Asian longhorned beetle, which, if it spreads, is estimated to be able to destroy 30 percent of the country’s hardwoods. In the West, millions of trees are being lost to the combined threat of mountain pine beetles and white pine blister rust. Cities across the country have lost tens of thousands of elm trees to Dutch elm disease over the last 60 years. Developing strong management and restoration plans is essential to protecting our forests from invasives, disease and pests.

Our Strategy

Each threat to forests requires us to take a unique approach to solving it.

Through American Forests Global ReLeaf, we work to replant trees, including disease-resistant trees, in areas harmed by disease, insects and more.

A mountain pine beetle excavating a tunnel in a ponderosa pine

A mountain pine beetle excavating a tunnel in a ponderosa pine. Credit: Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University,

Meanwhile, our Endangered Western Forests initiative is helping fight myriad threats to our western forests by planting disease-resistant trees, applying insect-repelling pheromone patches to trees, developing new management plans and more.

Injecting an ash tree to protect against EAB

Injecting an ash tree to protect against emerald ash borer. Credit: David Cappaert, Michigan State University/

Other issues can be addressed more efficiently through policy than field work by trying to prevent future problems, as well as fixing current ones. This approach has led to our efforts in advocating for sustainable forest management, economic incentives for landowners to keep their property forested, and recognition of forests as water resources.

Take Action

Visit American Forests’ Action Center to send pre-written letters to Congress and other representatives to support sound wildfire policy. Letters available now include:

donate_editDonate to American Forests to support our work, like our efforts to protect forests from the threats they face.



Forest Threats News from our Loose Leaf blog

Forest Digest – Week of October 5, 2015

by American Forests
E. O. Wilson

Find out the latest in forestry news in this week’s Forest Digest!

In the fight to stop climate change, forests are a vital weapon — The Guardian
Leading up to the climate change summit in Paris next month, many countries are announcing their commitments to reducing greenhouse gasses, and forests are playing a vital role. If deforestation ended, our damaged forests were restored and we protected our remainin... (Read More)

Why I’m Here: The Impact of Increased Housing Development on Our Forests & Our Emotions

by American Forests
Forest in West Virginia

By Andrew Bell, Policy Intern

As the fall semester policy intern, I think a fitting introduction would express how I arrived at this destination and how protecting and restoring American forests has become our shared mission. I was born and raised in northeastern West Virginia. The state is affectionately referred to as “Wild, Wonderful” and for good reason, with the Blue Ridge Mountains and crisp whitewater rap... (Read More)

Forest Digest – Week of August 10, 2015

by American Forests

This week’s forest digest has the trends for wildfires and China’s environmental future.

How Megafires are Remaking American Forests – National Geographic
As climate change worsens, fires of a scale never seen before are running rampant across the west, and forests are responding differently than before. APP takes big move to restore forests ahead of profits – Eco-Business
(Read More)