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 19, 2015

by American Forests
Water in Forests

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

US forests under threat as demand for wood-based biofuels grows – report — The Guardian
A report recently released by the Natural Resources Defense Council revealed that increased wood pellet exports for biofuels, particularly to Europe, are threatening “ecologically important” forests in the United States. X-ray technology reve... (Read More)

Forest Digest – Week of October 12, 2015

by American Forests

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

Why Restoring Nature Could Be the Key to Fighting Climate Change — Time
A recent study published in the journal Nature provides strong evidence that restoring biodiversity will strengthen ecosystems’ ability to combat climate change. Forests: Protected and ‘Intact’ Forests Fell at ‘Alarming’ Rate 2000-2012, S... (Read More)

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)