Tongass old-growth stands include almost thousand-year-old yellow cedar and western red cedar. Along with the cedars, towering old growth Sitka spruce and western hemlock provide the habitat that deer, wolves, bears and salmon need to thrive.
Experiencing Tongass old growth first-hand is a spiritual experience for many, so it's no surprise these stands are often described as "cathedral-like."
These cathedrals are also the current money-makers for Southeast Alaska's timber industry. Balancing these competing interests in Tongass old growth is a consistent challenge.
Past: From the creation of the Tongass National Forest by President Teddy Roosevelt in 1906, to the era of industrial logging and the pulp mills to wilderness designations in 1980 and 1990, to the end of the pulp mills in the 90s, to recent discussions on sustainability, there's been no shortage of controversy in Southeast Alaska. Learn more about this history, and SEACC's intimate involvement.
Present: The 2008 Tongass Land Management Plan is the document under which current management of the Tongass National Forest is based. Click the link above for more information about the plan and how it is being implemented, and the review process currently underway.
Future: The Tongass National Forest's Transition Framework articulates a vision for ending old-growth logging on the Tongass and transitioning to a more balance forest economy based on second growth logging, restoration, fishing, renewable energy, recreation, and tourism. SEACC is fully supportive of this transition and we're working to make it a success and a permanent policy for the Tongass.