"A Casualty Of Trump’s Immigration Policy: Millions Of Trees"

"The decision to suspend seasonal visas is expected to hurt forestry firms as well as state and federal governments."

"America needs millions of new trees each year for forests damaged by natural catastrophes, thinned by logging and developed to protect watersheds. But this year, many of the workers who do the planting are being barred from the U.S. by the Trump administration.

Seasonal temporary workers mainly from Mexico and South America perform most of the reforestation work in the U.S., entering the country in October each year for a six-month planting season.

But the White House last month suspended most seasonal temporary visas, known as H-2Bs, for the rest of the year in an effort to free up jobs for American workers as the country experiences record-high unemployment.

Now an entire planting season could be lost, leaving the U.S. with millions of fewer trees, forestry industry representatives warn. That could include work on the U.S. Forest Service’s own programs, which rely on contract labor to maintain federal forested lands."

Liz Crampton reports for Politico July 12, 2020.

Source: Politico, 07/14/2020