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Goal 4: Forest Lands

Forests cover a hilly landscapeOregon's forests are some of the most productive in the world. While commercial timber harvest has declined in the last few decades, it remains a major economic contributor to our state’s economy. Forests in Oregon cover more than 30 million acres, about 48 percent of the state.

Goal 4 protects working forest land around the state, preserving it for commercial forestry while recognizing its value for fish and wildlife habitat, recreation, and protection of air and water quality.

The goal requires county to identify forest land, designate it as such on the comprehensive plan map, and zone it consistently with state rules. The goal defines forest land in two ways. One way is based on productivity, as measured by the U.S. Forest Service. The other is by making a judgement about whether land is suitable for other, non-commercial forest uses, such as watershed protection, fish and wildlife habitat, and recreation.

Goal 4 places development restrictions on forest lands. These restrictions seek to prevent activities that could conflict with forestry practices. Local zoning regulations prevent forest land from being divided into parcels too small to manage effectively for timber, habitat, recreation, watershed protection, and other purposes. Some forest parcels qualify for a dwelling.

Original Adoption: 12/27/74; Effective: 1/25/75
Amended: 12/16/83; Effective: 12/30/83
Amended: 1/25/90; Effective: 2/5/90
Amended: 8/7/92; Effective: 8/7/93
Amended: 2/18/94; Effective: 3/1/94

Read full text version of Goal 4

Administrative Rules that implement Goal 4:

OAR 660-006 – Goal 4 Forest Lands
OAR 660-006, Exhibit A – Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions Form
OAR 660-031 – State Permit Compliance and Compatibility


Farm and Forest Protection
Farm and Forest Reports
Oregon Department of Forestry
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife
Bureau of Land Management
US Forest Service – Region 6


Gordon Howard
Community Services Division Manager
Phone: 503-856-6935