Public Involvement

collage public involve


Public input has been essential and valued throughout the forest plan revision process. We received thousands of comments from the public helping us understand how different people use, depend on and appreciate the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests. Comments were used, along with Forest Service knowledge and best available science, to build a strong plan that is reflective of both community interests and best management practices.

We don't count comments by topic, because that doesn't help us develop a broadly supported management strategies. Instead of focusing on the volume of comments we receive, we encouraged the public to submit comments with detailed information about specific places and uses of the forests. We referenced the content of public comments every day as we drafted the revised plan.

It is important to note that public comments are only one form of public input. In addition to written comments, we heard from the public at 49 face-to-face U.S. Forest Service plan revision meetings including Open Houses in 2017 and 2020 hosted at locations around the Forests. We've also participated in collaborative meetings with partners, local governments, Federally Recognized Tribes, scientists, and interested citizen groups, by request. The plan's strong emphasis on public involvement of all kinds has provided a platform for diverse interests to work together for their benefit and that of the forests.

The proposed plan and draft Environmental Impact Statement were released on February 7, 2020. The revised plan has now been released, January 21, 2022. 

Past Public Meetings and Workshops

Ways for you to be involved:

  • Help with the plan monitoring program: We will work with the public and partners to gather input on monitoring questions, approaches, and partner resources.
  • Help with implementation of the plan! Work with organizations and your Ranger District on projects of interest to you.