Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest Set to Release Management Plan

Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest is preparing to release an updated management plan in the fall of 2018. This plan would affect the 1.1 million acre Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina, which is the site of 320 federally protected miles of the Appalachian Trail.

Local activists expressed concern over earlier drafts of the management plan, which left more than 70 percent of Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest vulnerable to logging.

“The forest service is writing a plan that will dramatically increase logging,” Will Harlan of Friends of Big Ivy and I Heart Pisgah said in a press release from I Heart Pisgah. “We’re hoping to ensure that the 36 most important recreation and conservation areas in the forest are off-limits to logging and permanently protected.”

The portion of the Appalachian Trail that passes through Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest is under National Park Service jurisdiction and would not be directly impacted by changes to the management plan, but conservation groups fear that the surrounding area would be affected.

According to the Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest website, the forest service is no longer seeking comment on the current version of the management plan, but the final plan will be open to public input when it is released sometime in the fall of 2018.

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