Last week, The Nature Conservancy and the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest signed a Stewardship Agreement that officials say will improve the health and long-term sustainability of the forest while expanding the ability to provide timber to Wisconsin’s forest products industry.
The Nature Conservancy's Matt Dallman says money generated from harvesting timber will go to conservation projects here in the Northwoods...
"....we're going to be managing about 380 acres of land north of Laona in Forest County. The timber will be harvested. We're setting that up for bids sometime this fall. We hope it gets sold and harvested this winter or next winter. We'll then turn that revenue into trout habitat, stream improvement work in Forest county...."
Work is also projected in Oconto county.
Dallman says this agreement keeps the money locally..
"....the agreement allows money generated locally from the harvest to stay local. So we're able to harvest the timber and work with local contractors and individuals to keep that money local to do local projects...."
The Nature Conservancy will offer for sale approximately 1.9 million board feet of primarily red pine and mixed conifer timber on 380 acres of National Forest land and oversee the harvest in partnership with the National Forest. He says The Nature Conservancy will also mark out another 180 acres of forest just south of Laona.
Dallman thinks it will take at least two years to complete the project.
Congress authorized the Forest Service to collaborate with non-profit organizations, state and local governments, educational institutions and tribal entities to sell timber and use the proceeds of those sales to carry out projects that improve forest stand health, water quality, soil productivity and wildlife and fish habitat.