Community forests are working forests owned and managed by municipalities, government agencies, tribes and non-profit organizations for the benefit of local communities. Community forests can deliver the triple-bottom line for communities, providing the unique social, ecological and economic benefits they need. WEC helps communities throughout Washington find funding for the creation and implementation of community forest projects.

The Northwest Community Forest Coalition provides more information and resources on community forests in Washington.

Community forest projects can also apply for grant funding through the Community Forests Program at the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office.

Community Forest Storytelling

Each community forest has a unique story, and our partners at the Northwest Community Forest Coalition (NWCFC) have been helping local community forests share theirs through a new video storytelling project. We encourage you to take a few minutes to watch the Community Forests 101 overview to understand how our region’s partners engage with community forests. You can also learn about the community forests taking shape in Jefferson County at Chimacum Ridge and in Whatcom County around Stewart Mountain, and see how the Indian Creek forest is continuing to grow and support community priorities.

This unique and compelling storytelling project is made possible with support from the United States Forest Service Community Forest & Open Space Conservation Program. If you’d like to learn more about our partners with the Northwest Community Forest Coalition, please visit their website to access the resources developed to support the growth of community forests across Washington and Oregon.

Mount Adams Community Forest

In Klickitat County, the Mt. Adams Community Forest is demonstrating how forest management focused on ecological health, civic engagement and local employment is building local wealth and well-being.

WEC and a team of partners have shown what those benefits look like in a report titled Economic Impacts of the Mt. Adams Community Forest: 2014-2017. Check-out the summary of those findings or the full report.

Chimacum Ridge Forest

Check out our video about the Chimacum Ridge forest project, and how it’s delivering environmental, economic, and ecosystem benefits to Jefferson County communities.

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Nisqually Carbon Project

Microsoft purchased carbon credits to offset emissions in their own backyard – at the foothills of Mount Rainier – thanks to our certification of forestland with the Nisqually Land Trust.

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Program contact

Katie Fields, Forests & Communities Program Manager