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Woodland conservation means the retention of priority woodland areas for the benefit of the community. Priority woodlands are those tree stands identified through a planning process to have special qualities warranting preservation. For example, unusual or old-growth stands, habitats for rare or endangered plants or animals, or aquifer recharge areas may warrant special attention and priority protection. Each community must go through a planning process to determine what resources they would like to see protected.
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Between 1972 and 1995, Hunterdon County lost 20% of its upland forests. This does not even include any forested wetlands. Trees - especially contiguous woodlands, serve the critical public and environmental needs, including stormwater management, erosion control, groundwater recharge and threatened and endangered species habitat. They reduce noise pollution, filter water, conserve energy, and provide aesthetic value. Trees and woodlands can be a financial benefit to communities, landowners, and builders alike, creating a win-win situation for everyone.