Review of Idaho's Forest Legacy Program Report uri icon



  • (PAG Issue Brief, no. 20) The Forest Legacy Program is a federally funded program that helps states acquire conservation easements on private, working forestlands. The intent of the program is to protect timber producing, environmentally significant, private forestlands from being converted to non-forest uses. Idaho has participated in the program since 2002, acquiring conservation easements on about 90,000 acres. Idaho Department of Lands requested a report reviewing the program’s activity in the state, responsibilities including financial obligations required of the state, and other emerging issues associated with the state’s involvement in the program. The contents of this report are based on a review of Forest Legacy Program policy documents, project documentation, interviews with federal and state agencies involved in the program, and interviews with project sponsors. The review finds that Idaho has acquired conservation easements totaling approximately $55 million, and the program is an important component of the state’s strategy for protecting and promoting private forestlands, as recognized in the Forest Action Plan. Continued investments in the program may help the state to grow the program, engage private forestland owners in keeping forests in production, and monitor conservation easements to ensure ongoing public benefits are realized.

publication date

  • March 2017