A Rainforest Alliance project team consisting of a forestry socio-economic assessor and a wildlife ecologist toured Gallitzen, Clear Creek and Sproul state forest districts. They met with DCNR officials and stakeholders, scoring woodlands on timber-resource sustainability, forest-ecosystem maintenance, financial and socioeconomic considerations and other categories. Auditors sought stakeholder input on deer impact in the forest; implementation of the Deer Management Assistance Program; forest regeneration; and remediation of trails following a motorcycle enduro race in Sproul State Forest.Specifically, Rainforest Alliance applauded the bureau for:
- Habitat enhancement in a reclaimed surface coal mine, now home to threatened and endangered bird species, and designated as a High Conservation Value Forest in Gallitzin State Forest;
- Cooperation, training, co-coordination and research efforts with the USDA Forest Service in addressing potential regeneration shortfalls in Clear Creek State Forest;
- Reduced impact of the July 2012 motorcycle enduro race in Sproul State Forest; trail remediation after the event; and efforts to balance stakeholder needs and sound forest management in overseeing an event that drew some 250 participants.