02/23/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/23/2021 11:55
Planting trees? Check! Cutting trees responsibly? Check! Working to make sure Michigan's state forests are healthy and abundant for generations to come? Check that, too.
Michigan's 3.9 million acres of state forest - which cover parts of the northern Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula - have just been recertified as responsibly managed by two independent organizations.
'The whole point is to provide users and consumers with confidence that the forest-based products they buy and use come from responsibly managed sources,' said Keith Kintigh, forest conservation and certification specialist for the DNR's Forest Resources Division.
Michigan, certified in 2005, was one of the earliest states in the region to gain such distinction. It has been certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® and the Forest Stewardship Council® every year since. Both groups set standards for such things as planting and harvesting practices, forest planning, and protecting rare and unique ecological and cultural features of the forest.
'Michigan exceeded the standards in several important areas, including state forest recreation opportunities and employee training,' said Jeff Stampfly, chief of the Forest Resources Division. 'We're proud of these certifications, which assure that we are responsibly managing the forest for a variety of uses.'
Forest certification confirms the quality of the DNR's forest management practices and provides for tracking and labeling of wood-based forest products derived from Michigan state forests.
The recertification audit was conducted in October and included reviews of work in Lansing and the state forest management units in Traverse City, Atlanta, Newberry and Escanaba. Audits included a field review of randomly selected timber sales, tree planting sites and recreation areas on state forest lands and all associated documentation. The Lansing audit included review of forest planning, training and human resources programs.
Questions concerning the DNR's forest certification process? Contact Keith Kintigh at 989-619-2296.