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Criterion 7 Indicator 51
Rationale
The Extent to Which the Legal Framework Encourages
"Best practices" management codes are designed to encourage appropriate forest management practices, which are ultimately the key factor in forest sustainability. The codes are written guidelines that prescribe specific forest management actions, and may be regulatory, quasi-regulatory, or voluntary. In all cases, the intent of "best practices" codes is to ensure forest sustainability.

Evaluation
Legal framework for non-federal forest lands — "best practices" codes
 
The state of Oregon legally mandates that private forest owners and local governments follow best practices codes in managing their forest lands. The state develops and enforces these codes through the administration of the Oregon Forest Practices Act. For privately owned forest land, the state of Oregon’s public policy is to encourage economically efficient forest practices that assure the continuous growing and harvesting of forest tree species and the maintenance of forest land for such purposes as the leading use, consistent with sound management of soil, air, water, fish and wildlife resources, and scenic resources within visually sensitive corridors, in order to assure the continuous benefits of those resources for future generations.
 
Legal framework for federally managed forests — "best practices" codes
 
For the federal forest management agencies, national best practices codes are identified in their manuals, handbooks, and other professional guidance. In addition, each national forest and BLM district has developed a set of management standards and guidelines appropriate to the specific sites and conditions on those units.
 
These standards and guidelines are consistent with national standards, cover a wide array of resources, and are included as a central part of the land and resource management plans developed by the administrative units (as discussed under Indicator #49).