This letter, and a list of all signatories, will be sent to all Members of House Environment and Transportation Committee, and Senate Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs Committee during the 2019 Maryland Legislative Session. To learn more about this legislation, click here.
Amendments to Maryland's Forest Conservation Act
- Task Force Bill (Bill numbers pending)
- Fee-in-Lieu Adjustments (HB 272, SB 234)
- No Net Loss Definition (HB 120, SB 203)
As people of faith who respect the sanctity of the Earth and the whole web of life, we are asking you to support the suite of three bills designed to improve Maryland's Forest Conservation Act.
Children once played easily in trees in their back yard, at a park down the street, or at Grandma’s house. But, today, forests are hard to find – when was the last time you spotted a child climbing a tree?
We are literally stealing trees from the next generation. From 2009 to 2017, over 14,000 acres of forest have been lost due to development. That's equivalent to 11,000 football fields! Forests play a crucial role in stabilizing soil, improving air and water quality, offering important mammal habitats, and reducing ambient air temperatures with cooling shade.
The suite of three bills will:
- Create a task force made up of broad stakeholders to examine historical forestry data and make recommendations for how to protect our forests.
- Fix the broken fee-in-lieu system that is currently failing to replace lost forests acre-for-acre.
- Redefine "No Net Loss" in the Act so that forested land is protected at the level it existed when the Act was first implemented in the 1990s, as originally intended.
At this time when the world is warming and trees are God's natural way of retaining balance to an ecosystem, the last thing we should be doing is allowing unfettered destruction of forests.
We shall not steal trees from the next generation. Please fight to protect our forests by supporting this bill.