Planning Rule Science Review

The Forest Service has sought to ground the content of the planning rule in science. During development of the Proposed Rule and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS), the Agency solicited the input of both internal and external science experts to ensure that the science behind the proposed rule and environmental analysis is current, relevant, accurate, and appropriately applied.  

To that end, the Agency contracted with a non-partisan organization, Resolve, to act as a neutral, third party in conducting an external science review of the DEIS.  The external review was initiated when the proposed rule and DEIS became available to the public.  In order to ensure the integrity and independence of the review process, the identity of the reviewers and the content of their analysis were kept confidential by Resolve, including from the planning rule team, until the review was completed.

Seven reviewers were selected by Resolve to evaluate three key questions on scientific caliber, treatment of uncertainty, and comprehensiveness of the DEIS.  Resolve provided a summary report and the independent reviews to the planning rule team on April 21, 2011.  

The planning rule team used the results of the external review, along with input from the public, to improve the analytical and scientific foundation of the final programmatic environmental impact statement and preferred alternative. In requesting and sharing the content of this external scientific review, we continue our commitment to transparency and active public engagement to create a strong final rule for our National Forest System.

To read the Science Review of the US Forest Service Draft Environmental Impact Statement for National Forest System Land Management, click here.





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