New Grants to Protect 2 Million Acres of Forest Land in 33 States


photo: J. Novak

According to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, new grants will permanently protect private forestland in 33 states and U.S. territories. The grants were awarded through the Forest Legacy Program (FLP) and total $72 million. The program will protect nearly 2 million acres of land in all. The Forest Legacy Program works with individual states to strategically protect lands from development in order to protect air and water quality. The program will also add recreational areas to a number of states as well as creating jobs.

"The threats facing our nation's forests do not recognize property boundaries, and we must cooperate across landscapes to protect working forests that supply clean and abundant water, shelter wildlife, and help us mitigate and adapt to climate change," said Vilsack. "The grants announced today will help the Forest Legacy Program protect working forests in states around the country that are in danger of becoming fragmented or disappearing altogether."

Areas to be protected:

Alaska, South Denali, $675,000
Ala., Cumberland Mountains Preserve, $640,000
American Samoa, Ottoville Rainforest Preserve, $1,000,000
Ariz., San Pedro River Ecosystem, $900,000
Calif., Chalk Mountain Area, $2,000,000
Colo., Snow Mountain Ranch, $2,500,000
Conn., Tulmeadow Farm, $1,415,000
Del., Green Horizons, $4,000,000
Fla., St. Vincent Sound-to-Lake Wimico, $2,500,000
Ga., Murff tract- Rayonier Forest, $3,500,000
Hawaii, Kainalu Forest Watershed, $1,500,000
Iowa, Preparation Canyon, $1,315,000
Idaho, Bane Creek Neighbors, $2,465,000
Idaho, McArthur Lake Wildlife Corridor, $3,345,000
Mass., Metacomet-Monadnock Forest, $245,000
Mass., Southern Monadnock Plateau II, $1,120,000
Maine, Katahdin Forest Expansion, $3,700,000
Minn., Koochiching Forest Legacy, $3,000,000
Mont., Murray Douglas Conservation Easement, $2,900,000
N.H., Cardigan Highlands, $2,400,000
N.J., Musconetcong & Rockaway River Watersheds, $1,000,000
Nev., Castles-Bowers Mansion, $900,000
N.Y., Follensby Pond, $2,500,000
Ohio, Vinton furnace, $1,610,000
Ore., Skyline Forest, $2,500,000
S.C., Belfast, $3,250,000
Tenn., North Cumberland Conservation Area, $4,160,000
Texas, Longleaf Ridge, $1,820,000
U.S. Virgin Islands, Annaly Bay/Hermitage Valley, $1,500,000
Utah, Dry Lakes Ranch, $1,400,000
Va., Chowan River Headwaters, $2,240,000
Vt., Eden Forest, $2,200,000
Wash., Mt. St. Helens Forest, $2,500,000
Wis., Chippewa Flowage, 1,500,000
Wis., Wild Rivers, $2,330,000
W.Va., South Branch, $230,000

Much of the lands through the FLP program are protected through private easements or from states purchasing the land from private citizens.

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