Conserve Working Forest and Range Landscapes: Population Growth and Development Impacts

Excerpted from the USDA Forest Service State and Private Forestry Farm Bill Requirement and Redesign Strategies (pdf):

In many parts of the United States, forests and other open space are being fragmented and converted to development. Forestry agencies can work with partners, stakeholders and communities to identify and protect priority forest landscapes through land acquisition, conservation easements, and land use policies. Forestry agencies can also provide technical assistance to communities to help them strategically plan for and conserve forests and other open space.

Factors contributing to loss include residential, commercial and industrial development; expansion of utility infrastructure and transportation networks; and planning, zoning, and policies that favor conversion. Consequences include the outright loss of public benefits associated with forests or the marginalization of those values provided by contiguous forested landscapes. Fragmentation also includes "parcelization," or the fracturing of large singular ownerships into numerous smaller ones.

Assessments and strategies should attempt to identify, protect and connect ecologically important forest landscapes, and open space, thus maintaining a green infrastructure, particularly around and within areas of, population growth and development.

Chapter Overview

This chapter contains one analysis which identifies California landscapes of high ecosystem values that are currently facing significant threats from development. High ecosystem value landscapes are defined as areas where specific wildlife habitat types are at significant risk from regional development over the next ten to 30 years.

Full Chapter

Download the Population Growth and Development Impacts chapter (.pdf).
Note: References (.pdf) (for all chapters) and other information are found separately.


Download the methodology document (.pdf) for Population Growth and Development Impacts.

Maps, Data and Tables

Note: These data are provided to document the various Assessment analyses, and to provide the potential to replicate results. Updated versions of these datasets may be available from the various data providers.

Population Growth and Development Impacts
GIS Data (click to expand list)


  • For more information about Population Growth and Development Impacts, please contact Rich Walker, 707.576.8210.

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