Forest management (21 - 30 of 112 items)
Forest Service: Emerging Issues Highlight the Need to Address Persistent Management Challenges
GAO-09-443T: Published: Mar 11, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2009.
The Forest Service, within the Department of Agriculture, manages over 190 million acres of forest and grassland. The agency is responsible for managing its lands for various purposes--including recreation, grazing, timber harvesting, and others--while ensuring that such activities do not impair the lands' long-term productivity. Carrying out these often competing responsibilities has been made mo...
Department of the Interior: Major Management Challenges
GAO-09-425T: Published: Mar 3, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 3, 2009.
The Department of the Interior is responsible for managing much of the nation's vast natural resources. Its agencies implement an array of programs intended to protect these precious resources for future generations while also allowing certain uses of them, such as oil and gas development and recreation. In some cases, Interior is authorized to collect royalties and fees for these uses. Over the y...
Federal Land Management: Observations on a Possible Move of the Forest Service into the Department of the Interior
GAO-09-223: Published: Feb 11, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2009.
Growing ecological challenges ranging from wildland fires to climate change have revived interest in moving the Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Forest Service into the Department of the Interior (Interior). The Forest Service manages almost a quarter of the nation's lands but is the only major land management agency outside Interior. GAO was asked to report on the potential effects of moving th...
Federal Land Management: Potential Effects and Factors to Consider in a Move of the Forest Service into the Department of the Interior
GAO-09-412T: Published: Feb 24, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2009.
The Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Forest Service, which manages almost a quarter of the nation's lands, is the only major land management agency outside the Department of the Interior (Interior). Four federal land management agencies--the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Park Service in Interior--manage most of the 680 million acr...
Wildland Fire Management: Interagency Budget Tool Needs Further Development to Fully Meet Key Objectives
GAO-09-68: Published: Nov 24, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 24, 2008.
Wildland fires have become increasingly damaging and costly. To deal with fire's threats, the five federal wildland fire agencies--the Forest Service in the Department of Agriculture and four agencies in the Department of the Interior (Interior)--rely on thousands of firefighters, fire engines, and other assets. To ensure acquisition of the best mix of these assets, the agencies in 2002 began deve...
Federal Land Management: Use of Stewardship Contracting Is Increasing, but Agencies Could Benefit from Better Data and Contracting Strategies
GAO-09-23: Published: Nov 13, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 13, 2008.
The Department of Agriculture's Forest Service and the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) have stewardship contracting authority, which allows the agencies to trade goods--such as timber--for services (e.g., thinning forests or rangelands) that the agencies would otherwise pay for with appropriated dollars, and to enter into stewardship contracts lasting up to 10 years. T...
Forest Service: Better Planning, Guidance, and Data Are Needed to Improve Management of the Competitive Sourcing Program
GAO-08-195: Published: Jan 22, 2008. Publicly Released: Feb 21, 2008.
Competitive sourcing is aimed at promoting competition between federal employees and the private sector as a way to improve government operations. Key work activities--those that are either inherently governmental or core to the agency's mission--are generally exempt from competitions. In fiscal year 2004, Congress began placing spending limitations on the Forest Service's competitive sourcing pro...
Wildland Fire Management: Better Information and a Systematic Process Could Improve Agencies' Approach to Allocating Fuel Reduction Funds and Selecting Projects
GAO-07-1168: Published: Sep 28, 2007. Publicly Released: Sep 28, 2007.
Recognizing that millions of acres are at risk from wildland fire, the federal government expends substantial resources on thinning brush, trees, and other potentially hazardous fuels to reduce the fire risk to communities and the environment. However, questions have been raised about how the agencies responsible for wildland fire management--the Department of Agriculture's Forest Service and the...
Climate Change: Agencies Should Develop Guidance for Addressing the Effects on Federal Land and Water Resources
GAO-07-863: Published: Aug 7, 2007. Publicly Released: Sep 6, 2007.
Climate change has implications for the vast land and water resources managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Forest Service (FS), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and National Park Service (NPS). These resources generally occur within four ecosystem types: coasts and oceans, forests, fresh waters, and grasslands and shrublands....
Federal Timber Sales: Forest Service Could Improve Efficiency of Field-Level Timber Sales Management by Maintaining More Detailed Data
GAO-07-764: Published: Jun 27, 2007. Publicly Released: Jul 27, 2007.
For years, GAO has raised concerns about the ability of the Department of Agriculture's Forest Service (Service) to track the amounts it obligates for and spends on timber sales and to use this information in managing the sales. Timber sales are generally carried out by ranger districts (the lowest level of the Service's decentralized organizational structure), which are overseen by national fores...