The Board of Forestry approved high value conservation area designations in June 2013 to help deliver Greatest Permanent Value benefits for Oregonians. These designations highlight unique conservation characteristics of different forestland areas, and demonstrate ODF’s commitment to ensuring important environmental activities continue for future generations.
The decision changed the Forest Land Management System administrative rule for State Forests (OAR 629-035-0030), renaming these conservation areas once known as "special stewardship areas," to high value conservation areas and special use areas.
High value conservation areas (HVCAs) highlight portions of state-owned forests where management is focused on wildlife habitat, aquatic and streamside habitat and unique, threatened and endangered plants. Special use areas are designated to show where forest management is influenced by special considerations, for example: cultural or historic resources, recreation areas, areas with public safety hazards or transmission lines to name a few.
Through dividing “special stewardship areas” into two new categories, identifying state-owned forest areas focused on conservation management becomes clearer to identify and understand.
You can visit conservation areas on your own through a self-guided conservation tours: