The Tongass National Forest needs the help of the Music Industry.

Located in Southeast Alaska, the Tongass is the only National Forest in the United States in which clearcutting old-growth trees is still permitted. Old-growth Sitka spruce is a choice tonewood for guitar soundboards. Almost every major acoustic guitar manufacturer in the U.S. obtains this prized wood from the Tongass.

We as musicians, manufacturers, and music lovers can take action NOW to protect this precious national treasure.

Leave a legacy of music.

Help end the production and purchase of acoustic guitars made from clearcut old-growth Sitka spruce.


How was your
guitar made?


Protect the Tongass
with your dollars.


Say NO to purchasing old-growth Sitka spruce.


Collaborating to protect an American Crown Jewel.


Make your voice heard. Sign the Petition.

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It’s odd how we often forget that the instruments we play and express our music through come from once-living trees that are much older than ourselves. If we want to continue to play beautiful instruments from these trees, we must honor our National Forests and not play instruments built with clearcut wood.

Adam Garner, Musician &

Of the 193 million acres of National Forests in the country the streams of the Tongass National Forest are unsurpassed as productive salmon spawning and rearing habitat. Tourism, recreation, fish and wildlife are the lifeblood of Southeast Alaska. I applaud the progress the Forest Service has made in moving away from the harvest of old growth and encourage an even faster transition to protecting these old growth forests. These trees and streams are the “gold” of Alaska that will be there providing for future generations as long as we take care of them.

Mike Dombeck, 14th Chief of the U.S. Forest Service

Early on, I decided we were going to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Our message is: You don’t have to compromise. We can make the best stuff in the world using responsibly harvested wood. And there are lots of ways to do that.

Richard Hoover, Owner, Santa Cruz Guitars

There should be a way to sustain jobs while picking and choosing which trees we are cutting and for what purpose those trees are cut. But to simply clearcut an area because it’s the easy way is not, in my humble opinion, considerate of the environment or the industries that depend on timber.

The Tongass National Forest is a salmon factory. The reason it remains that way is because we haven’t, unlike so many other salmon habitats in the Lower 48, road-ed, over-cut, mined, or otherwise developed it to depletion. Thankfully, the US Forest Service is taking steps through its land management planning process to safeguard old-growth forests that harbor important salmon stocks. Whether you care about guitars, salmon, jobs, or God’s Creation, there is no reason to liquidate Alaska’s publicly-owned old-growth forest.

Preserving old growth trees on the Tongass will ensure the conservation of numerous wildlife species and will leave a lasting legacy for future generations.

Economics: The Dollars and Sense of Clearcutting the Tongass

Wood products, wood fiber, and forest management are all necessary to support society. There are regions in the United States in which climates nurture quickly-regenerating forests. In these places, management practices like clearcutting or thinning certain tree species are acceptable. But applying these principles to a slow-growing, ancient forest like the Tongass is reckless. In fact, it makes zero economic sense.

More than one million tourists journey to the Tongass each year to experience its remarkable natural beauty and abundant wildlife. Tourism represents 8% of regional employment and as a combined industry, generates $1 billion in Southeast Alaska.

The Tongass isn’t called America’s Salmon Forest for nothing. Nearly 20,000 miles of undammed creeks, rivers and lakes support commercial, subsistence and sport fishing. This fishery generates $1 billion annually and accounts for 11% of Southeast Alaska’s employment.

The timber industry—built on the harvest of old-growth trees—generates a mere $3 million annually. Timber represents less than 4% of the region’s employment.


It is estimated that the U.S. Forest Service loses more than $20 million annually subsidizing industrial-scale old-growth timber sales. Since 1980, this single National Forest may have lost up to $1 billion in subsidized sales. This deficit is undisputed.

More info
  • Timber (17 Million in Wages)
  • Tourism (180 Million in Wages)
  • Seafood (245 Million in Wages)
Tourism: $1 Billion to Local Economy
Tourism: $1 Billion to Local Economy
Salmon Fishery: $1 Billion Annually in Southeast Alaska
Salmon Fishery: $1 Billion Annually in Southeast Alaska
Timber Industry: $3 Million Annually (<1% of local economy)
Timber Industry: $3 Million Annually (<1% of local economy)

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Please act now – the clock is ticking for the Tongass National Forest!

We’ll be submitting petition signatures on June 1st to key officials, then continuing to submit at regular intervals leading up to November elections. Please take a moment to support the Tongass National Forest!

Next Submission: June 1, 2016

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