Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003 Law and Legal Definition
Healthy Forests Restoration Act was signed into law by President Bush in the year 2003 in response to the widespread forest fires during the summer of 2002.The act is designed to thin overstocked stands, clear away vegetation and trees to create shaded fuel breaks, provide funding and guidance to reduce or eliminate hazardous fuels in National Forests, improve forest fire fighting, and research new methods to halt destructive insects.
Major Provisions of the Act are:
Reduction of dense undergrowth that fuels catastrophic fires through thinning and prescribed burns
Improving the public involvement in the review process by providing opportunities for earlier participation, thus accomplishing projects in a more timely fashion
Selecting projects on a collaborative basis involving local, tribal, state, Federal and non-governmental entities
Focusing projects on Federal lands that meet strict criteria for risk of wildfire damage to communities, water supply systems and the environment
Authorizing the Healthy Forests Reserve Program, to protect, restore and enhance degraded forest ecosystems on private lands to promote the recovery of threatened and endangered species
Encouraging biomass energy production through grants and assistance to local communities creating market incentives for removal of otherwise valueless forest material and
Developing an accelerated program on certain Federal lands to combat insect infestations.