Frankfort, KY —Kentucky Forest Industries Association, headquartered here, a member of the White Oak Initiative steering committee, has announced its support of the findings and recommendations released recently in Restoring Sustainability for White Oak and Upland Oak Communities: An Assessment and Conservation Plan. American White Oak is a foundational tree species, currently occupying more than 104 million acres of public and private forestland across much of the eastern and central United States.
Not only does White Oak support extensive plant and animal biodiversity, but also it is the most commercially important timber Oak, generating billions of dollars annually and supplying necessary material to American industries such as furniture, flooring, cabinetry, and wine and spirits. With 95 percent of all bourbon being produced in Kentucky, this makes White Oak that much more important.
Directed by the White Oak Initiative steering committee, and developed by the American Forest Foundation and the University of Kentucky, Restoring Sustainability for White Oak and Upland Oak Communities: An Assessment and Conservation Plan features science-backed data as well as 10 specific recommended forest management practices that aim to provide long-term sustainability benefits for Oak forests.
Without intervention today, the report states, the American White Oak population will begin to decline significantly within the next 10 to 15 years. In order to prevent this, active, cross-boundary collaboration, participation and support from industry, resource professionals, policymakers, landowners and others is needed, before it’s too late.
KFIA looks forward to assisting with the implementation of the White Oak Initiative, designed to educate everyone from loggers to landowners to policy makers to ensure the future of this important species. For more information, please review the full report which can be found on the White Oak Initiative’s website www.whiteoakinitiative.org.