By the President of the United States of America
The vast, unforgettable forests of America have always been one of our most precious treasures. Today, we have some 740 million acres of woodland-roughly one-third of the Nation's land area. This vast resource provides many of the products we depend upon-lumber for our homes, paper for recording our thoughts, fuel for heating and cooking, and the basic elements of thousands of other products.
Seventy-five years ago, the Forest Service was created within the United States Department of Agriculture to help conserve and protect America's forestlands. The dedicated men and women of this agency can be proud of their accomplishments. The science of forestry has made great strides. Today, researchers are finding ways to speed the growth of trees; discovering new methods for protecting forests from fire, insects, and disease; and developing production methods for more fully utilizing our wood resources. New methods for extracting energy from wood are also under development to help solve the Nation's energy problems.
Progress is also being made in the effort to ensure that adequate areas of our forests are preserved in their natural state for the enjoyment and benefits of Americans both now and in the future. Congress is now considering my recommendations for classifying an additional 15.4 million acres as wilderness within the National Forest System. These lands, in addition to the wilderness already created by Congress, will preserve the pristine quality of more than 30 million acres of National Forest.
While our forests continue to meet our demands for wood and recreation today, careful management is needed if they are to continue to do so in the future. All of us need to become more aware of the role woodlands play, directly and indirectly, in our lives. We must strive to improve our small woodlots as well as our large, professionally managed, public and private forests.
In order to promote awareness and to recognize the efforts of the thousands of men and women who have devoted their lives to managing this valuable resource, the Congress has designated the third week in October as National Forest Products Week.
Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week of October 19 through October 25, 1980, as National Forest Products Week and ask all Americans to demonstrate their appreciation of the value of forests through suitable activities.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of September, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fifth.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 4:14 p.m., September 4, 1980]