The Agriculture Committees of Congress have jurisdiction over the U.S. Forest Service, which is part of the USDA. Its most recognized envoy is still Smokey the Bear.
The mission of the Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
About one-third of the country is forestland, with nearly 60 percent privately owned and the balance publicly owned. Forestland is vitally important for industry, including lumber, paper products, and recreation, to name a few. Forestland is also crucial environmentally in terms of water and air quality, wildlife and wildlife habitat, and climate.
The Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978, the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Research Act of 1978, the Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003, and amendments made by Farm Bill legislation over the years constitute the bulk of the Forestry Title.