A study released November 16 by the Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology and conducted together with the Chesapeake Conservancy and the University of Vermont is the most comprehensive study of Maryland’s forest cover and tree canopy ever completed. The study finds that over time, Maryland’s rate of forest loss has declined and the state is approaching a goal of achieving no net forest loss. With State priorities focused on tree plantings and increased funding available for land protection and agricultural conservation practices, the state has the opportunity to soon achieve no net forest loss and tip the balance towards forest gain.
The Technical Study on Changes in Forest Cover and Tree Canopy in Maryland, or Maryland Forest Technical Study, uses high-resolution data to analyze forest and tree canopy change at the local scale and provide a greater understanding of the key drivers of change. Insights derived from the study may be helpful to develop recommendations and policies that shift the balance to meet Maryland’s forest cover and tree canopy goals. The partners made several recommendations as a result of this study, including improving monitoring through technological innovation, addressing the loss of tree canopy outside forests and assessing causes of tree canopy change within forest blocks.
For more information on the Forest Study, visit https://agnr.umd.edu/technical-study-changes-forest-cover-and-tree-canopy-maryland.