Summary of FY23 Selected Joint Chiefs' Landscape Restoration Partnership Projects
Arizona - Fort Huachuca Sentinel Landscape Phase Two
- Coronado National Forest
- Cochise, Pima, and Santa Cruz counties
- Congressional District 06 and 07
This project builds on previous accomplishments towards strategic goals, which restored 33,875 acres of forest and woodland, 50,000 acres of aquatic invasive control, and developed eight aquatic sites for listed species. Encompassing a mixture of restoration projects, this project includes 4,100 acres of vegetation treatment, 5,735 acres of watershed restoration, 13 miles of road decommissioning, three sites for aquatic habitat improvement, and innovative monitoring components to help understand how to improve future management. Treatments will be implemented in collaboration with Fort Apache Fuels Crew of the Fort Apache Agency, via the BIA’s Reserved Treaty Right Lands (RTRL) program. This project also aligns with a 2022 National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) America the Beautiful Challenge proposal from several partners totaling $1.5 million in restoration projects within the project area.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $1,053,640
Partners: Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD), Borderlands Restoration Network, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), Department of Defense (DOD)-U.S. Army Fort Huachuca and the Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) program, the Desert Botanical Garden, Fort Apache Tribe, The Nature Conservancy, Northern Arizona University, Quail Forever, Sky Island Alliance, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Arkansas and Oklahoma - Arklahoma Ozark Watershed Restoration
Ozark-St. Francis National Forests
- Benton, Carroll, Madison, and Washington counties
- Congressional District 03
- Adair, Cherokee, Delaware, and Sequoyah counties
- Congressional District 02
Northwest Arkansas and northeast Oklahoma have been facing the challenges of balancing urbanization and land uses such as agriculture with water quality and environmental health for decades. As far back as 1986 to recent years, there have been ongoing disputes between Oklahoma and Arkansas addressing water quality issues from agricultural uses. This project seeks to focus on two large watersheds that help to provide clean drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people in the region. Beaver Reservoir Watershed and the Illinois River Watershed span across northwest Arkansas into northeast Oklahoma. Surrounding areas with similar ecological site descriptions are also included. The project area is dominated by mixed closed canopy forest and grassland/pasture intermixed with urban land uses. Primary land uses in the watersheds are forest, pasture, and hay, with significant poultry production, as well as beef cattle, dairy and hog production. The project area land ownership covers city, state, private, and federal lands. The extremely collaborative nature of this project will help focus priorities of improving water quality and habitat conditions for at-risk species across multiple jurisdictions while also providing quality environmental and agricultural education along the way.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $956,009
Partners: Arkansas Department of Agriculture Forestry Division, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission (AGFC), Beaver Watershed Alliance, Cherokee Nation, Hobbs State Park, Illinois River Watershed Partnership (IRWP), The Nature Conservancy, Northwest Arkansas Land Trust (NWALT), Oklahoma Conservation Commission, Oklahoma Conservation Districts, Oklahoma Department of Agriculture Food and Forestry – Forestry Services (ODAFF-FS), Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation (ODWC), and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
California – Forest Health and Fire Resilient Rural Communities in Trinity County Phase Three
- Shasta-Trinity and Six Rivers National Forests
- Trinity County
- Congressional District 02
This project is part of an ongoing effort to protect the rural communities and natural resources of Trinity County in northwestern California. Building on two past Joint Chiefs projects, this project will address high-risk cross-boundary threats by strategically treating forests on both private and national forestlands. It will also address new threats created by the post-fire landscape from the 2020 and 2021 wildfires. Spearheaded by the Trinity County Collaborative Group, diverse stakeholders from across the spectrum of local and regional interests are working together to reduce and mitigate wildfire threats to communities and landowners, protect and improve water quality and supply for communities and industry, and improve habitat conditions for at-risk species while assisting in habitat recovery in areas recently impacted by wildfires.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $3,313,300
Partners: Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District, North Coast Resource Conservation District Collaborative, Trinity County Board of Supervisors, Trinity County Collaborative Group, Trinity County Fire Safe Council, Trinity County Resource Conservation District, Trinity River Watershed Council, University of California Cooperative Extension, Watershed Research and Training Center, Weaverville Community Forest Steering Committee, and Weaverville Volunteer Fire Department
Guam - Making Southern Guam Firewise and Wildfire Resistant
- Inalåhan, Malesso’, and Talo’fo’fo’ villages
- At-Large Congressional District
This project makes long-lasting investments to increase landscape-scale resilience to wildfires in southern Guam and restore native forests to support traditional Chamorro cultural uses while helping to preserve nearshore marine resources. Extensively altered native forests have transitioned into grasslands, savannas, and barren lands. Areas formerly forested are dominated by fire-prone grasses or are bare. Guam is experiencing increased drying and warming trends. Climate models predict increased and prolonged droughts, increasing the risk of wildfire. Unlike other parts of the US, wildfire is not a natural part of Guam’s ecosystems. In Guam, wildfires destroy the forest and facilitate weed invasions which not only threaten the watershed but perpetuate a grass-fire cycle. This is particularly damaging as these watersheds are susceptible to erosion and have water quality impacts on streams and coral reefs. This project will reduce the impact of fires on the area by strategically installing firebreaks, fuelbreaks, and plantings of greenbelts. This will facilitate firefighting efforts by improving access for wildland firefighters, protect agricultural operations and communities when fires do occur, and speed recovery of fire ravaged lands. The project also includes a public education component to empower local communities to be more resilient to wildfires, expand understanding of the need to prevent wildfires, and involve citizens in protection of the land. In addition to wildfire mitigation and water quality benefits, this project will also protect agricultural operations that are important for food security and island sustainability and life and property for these villages.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $207,129
Partners: Guam Department of Agriculture Forestry and Soil Resources Division (DOAG-FSRD), Department of Defense (DOD) Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) program, Hawaii Wildfire Management Organization (HWMO), local village mayors and community leaders, and Southern Guam Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD)
Idaho - South Teton Valley Hazardous Fuels Removal
- Caribou-Targhee National Forest
- Bonneville and Teton counties
- Congressional District 02
This project will reduce fire intensity and the risk of crown fires while restoring fire resistant forest conditions in the Teton Valley in eastern Idaho. It will also complement existing hazardous fuels removal work in the wildland-urban interface (WUI), and improve evacuation times for residents. Furthermore, this project will diversify the economy of the Teton Valley by continuing to grow the capacity of the local forest industry and by assisting limited resource landowners to treat the hazardous fuels on their property.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $636,000
Partners: Bureau of Land Management, High Country Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D), Idaho Department of Lands, Idaho Fish and Game, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Teton County Emergency Management, Teton County Fire and Rescue, and Teton Land Trust
Illinois - Cross-Boundary Upland Oak Restoration
- Shawnee National Forest
- Alexander, Jackson, Massac, and Pope counties
- Congressional District 12
Southern Illinois boasts a diverse assemblage of disturbance dependent oak-dominated natural communities. Mesophication and invasive species have altered stand structures, species composition, and fire behavior with negative impacts to ecosystem functioning. This project is part of an overall landscape strategy that will accelerate upland oak ecosystem restoration and reduce risks through a combination of stand management, invasive plant treatments, and prescribed fire on all ownerships in three priority areas. In collaboration with The Nature Conservancy's Women in Fire program, the project will engage and train female firefighters to help expand local capacity and treat more acres of land. This project will improve the health and resilience of these landscapes and bolster the conservation workforce, including both contractors and non-governmental organizations.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $767,811
Partners: Ameren Energy, Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), National Wild Turkey Federation, The Nature Conservancy, and Shawnee Resource Conservation and Development
Montana - Elkhorn Cooperative Management Area
- Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest
- Broadwater, Jefferson, and Lewis and Clark counties
- Congressional District 02
This project will support diverse and sustainable forest and non-forested ecosystems, reduce the intensity of wildfire, enhance wildlife habitat, and maintain or improve watershed values on 6,270 acres of private land and 13,500 acres of Forest Service lands. The Elkhorn Wildlife Management Unit (ECMA) is unique in the National Forest System and is cooperatively managed by the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forests (USDA Forest Service), the Butte Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP), NRCS, and the Department of Defense – Montana Army National Guard (DOD). The planning area is a mix of private, county, state and federal (NFS, BLM and Department of Army) lands, and presents a unique opportunity to create synergies across ownership boundaries and increase overall project efficiency and efficacy. High priority treatment areas for this project include a municipal watershed and numerous communities and residential developments in the wildland urban interface (WUI) which lie within high and extreme fire risk areas. There is a 21,000 acre Military Training Center and a utility corridor that will also benefit from improved forest conditions. Management activities will span several forest types. Reduction of conifer colonization in grasslands and shrublands will increase habitat diversity for additional wildlife species, improve the resilience of the local landscape, and benefit local communities. Meadow and shrubland restoration and the reintroduction of fire will improve high-quality wildlife habitat into the future and restore grasslands to more historic conditions.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $2,660,000
Partners: Big Elk Divide Restoration Collaborative, Broadwater Conservation District, Broadwater County, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Jefferson County, Jefferson County Weed District, Jefferson Valley Conservation District, Montana Army National Guard, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC), Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and Tri-County Fire Safe Working Group
New Jersey - New Jersey Pine Barrens Restoration
- Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, and Ocean counties
- Congressional District 01, 02, 03, and 04
The New Jersey Pine barrens are characterized by low, dense forests of pine and oak, ribbons of cedar and hardwood swamps bordering drainage courses, pitch pine lowlands, and bogs and marshes that create a vegetative mosaic. Recognized as a nationally and internationally important ecological region, the Pine barrens is a fire-adapted forest ecosystem that depends on wildfire for vegetative reproduction and the control of fuel buildup. This forest community is one of the most hazardous wildland fuel types in the nation. This project will improve the health and resilience of forest landscapes across public and private lands within the UNESCO designated Pinelands Biosphere Region/Pinelands National Reserve by 1) developing landscape level Fireshed Planning Areas in coordination with the USDA Forest Service “Development and Application of the Fireshed Registry” methods; 2) implementing forestry management activities on state and private lands for the purposes of reducing wildfire risk in municipal watersheds and the wildland-urban interface, implementing carbon defense activities, improving habitat for threatened and endangered species, and mitigating the effects of Southern pine beetle; and 3) rolling out a public outreach campaign to promote public awareness and program participation. This partnership will result in immense benefits to local communities. Data driven management decisions will help prevent loss of life and property in the wildland-urban interface (WUI), improve habitat for threatened and endangered species, protect valuable drinking water supplies, and help mitigate the impacts of climate change
Total FY23 Funding Request: $322,300
Partners: New Jersey Audubon, New Jersey Bureau of Land Management, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife, New Jersey Forest Fire Service, New Jersey Forest Service, and New Jersey State Park Service
North Dakota - Badlands Restoration Phase Two
- Dakota Prairie Grasslands
- Billings, Bowman, Dunn, Golden Valley, McKenzie, and Slope counties
- At-Large Congressional District
This project will manage 8,500 acres of juniper encroachment and ponderosa pine stands within the 1.3 million acres of badlands areas of western North Dakota to reduce the threat of wildfire near the communities of Amidon, Belfield, Fairfield, Grassy Buttes, Keene, Mandaree, and Medora, ND. Wildfire risk reduction treatments are also planned on and adjacent to Ft. Berthold Reservation. Treatments will also reduce wildfire risk to oil and gas development on private, state, and federal lands, while improving grasslands habitat for bighorn sheep and other native wildlife. Additionally, this project will improve water and soil conditions and provide improved forage quality and quantity for livestock grazing. Conservation practices will build upon the first phase of this project, which treated 1,200 acres of juniper and ponderosa pine stands with an additional 10,500 acres under contract to be treated.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $957,400
Partners: Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Medora Grazing Association, Mule Deer Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, North Dakota Game and Fish, North Dakota Natural Resource Trust, North Dakota Wildlife Federation, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and Wild Sheep Foundation
Oregon - North Wasco All Lands
- Mt. Hood National Forest
- Hood River and Wasco counties
- Congressional District 02 and 03
This project will provide resources to restore and promote resiliency in fire-adapted ecosystems of the east slopes of the Oregon Cascades. Through past management activities and fire exclusion, the fire-adapted conifer forests in the project area have deviated from the natural fire return interval and other disturbance cycles. A variety of treatments, including thinning, weeds treatments, road improvement and vegetation management, mastication and prescribed burning will be utilized to reduce fuel loadings and thin overstocked stands, with the goal of returning the landscape closer to its historic range of variability. Treatments will create resiliency to large-scale disturbances, while mitigating wildfire threats to at-risk adjacent communities within the wildland urban interface (WUI) and municipal watersheds in the project area.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $3,119,600
Partners: City of The Dalles, Office of State Fire Marshal, Oregon Department of Forestry, Oregon Department of State Lands, Oregon State University Extension, and Wasco County Forest Collaborative
Oregon - Southern Blues Restoration
- Malheur National Forest
- Grant County
- Congressional District 02
This project area is diverse both in the plants, wildlife species, and critical stream habitat for numerous threatened and endangered species located in the Southern Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon. The project boundary includes the populations of Mount Vernon, John Day, Canyon City, and Prairie City. This project will create strategic fuel treatments to reduce fire risk to local communities while improving forest, rangeland, and overall watershed resiliency to proactively address changes in climate and precipitation patterns. This project will also engage in outreach and education to landowners about their property to promote a more fire adapted landscape. Additionally, this project will support two local mills and a post-and-pole plant, providing local jobs to contractors as well as opportunities for children and families to thrive in the local communities.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $1,974,231
Partners: Bayer Corporation, Blue Mountain Forest Partners, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs, Grant County Community Action Team, Grant Soil and Water Conservation District, Jerome Natural Resource Consulting, Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, Oregon Department of Forestry, and Oregon State University Extension
Pennsylvania - Allegheny Plateau Habitat Restoration
- Allegheny National Forest
- Cameron, Clarion, Clearfield, Elk, Forest, Jefferson, McKean, Potter, Venango, and Warren counties
- Congressional District 15 and 16
This project will focus on improving the health and resiliency of both public and private forest resources across the landscape. Habitat development treatments will be prioritized through collaborative management for two at-risk species: the ruffed grouse and cerulean warbler. In turn, this project will provide benefits to communities by maintaining healthy, resilient forests through sustainable management while ensuring a consistent supply of ecosystem services. Treatments will benefit the rural 10-county area as well as urban populations within the watershed.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $1,057,600
Partners: Allegheny Forest Health Collaborative, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Forestry, Pennsylvania Game Commission, Pennsylvania Woodland Stewardship Innovation Partnership, Ruffed Grouse Society, Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
South Carolina - Piedmont Watershed Restoration
- Francis Marion & Sumter National Forests
- Abbeville, Chester, Edgefield, Fairfield, Laurens, Greenwood, McCormick, Newberry, Saluda, and Union counties
- Congressional District 03 and 05
This project will improve watershed health, water quality and flood resilience in areas that have been heavily impacted by historic agricultural and forestry land use practices. By improving stream and riparian conditions and providing for aquatic connectivity and streambank stabilization, this project will benefit aquatic and riparian wildlife species as well as downstream communities. This project will also reduce sedimentation and other water quality degradation within the watershed by supporting improved forest management practices which will increase water quality within the streams and rivers in the primarily forested watersheds.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $1,615,850
Partners: Abbeville Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), American Rivers, Chester SWCD, Clemson University, Congaree Riverkeeper, Dominion Energy, Edgefield SWCD, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Fairfield SWCD, Greenwood SWCD, Laurens SWCD, Longleaf Alliance, McCormick SWCD, Naturaland Trust, The Nature Conservancy, Newberry SWCD, Saluda SWCD, Savannah Riverkeeper, South Carolina Aquatic Connectivity Team, South Carolina Department of Environmental Control, South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, South Carolina Department of Transportation, South Carolina Forestry Commission, Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership, Trout Unlimited, Union SWCD, and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Wisconsin - Northeast Wisconsin Forestry and Wildlife Partnership
- Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest
- Florence, Forest, Langlade, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Oneida, Shawano
- Congressional District 07 and 08
This project will address wildfire threats, water quality, and wildlife habitat by removing down wood, treating invasive species in disturbed areas, and establishing trees as necessary. Water quality projects include improving aquatic organism passage, stream crossings, riparian forest buffers, and maintaining shade on streams in black ash wetlands threatened by emerald ash borer. Wildlife objectives include habitat creation for near threatened golden-winged warbler and critically imperiled monarch butterflies. Brook trout are also a focus and will benefit from improved water quality. Forest projects will focus on ash management, oak wilt, and sustainable forestry practices across other forest types, to enhance wildlife habitat, water quality and climate resilience. Community benefits will include reduction in fire risk, improvements to water quality and wildlife habitat, and more resilient forests. Working in coordination with the Wisconsin Tribal Conservation Advisory Council, treatments have been designed to beneficially impact Tribal lands. These restoration actions will bring in more travelers to the area and will also sustain the local forest products industry.
Total FY23 Funding Request: $690,140
Partners: American Bird Conservancy, American Woodcock Society, Lumberjack Resource Conservation and Development Council, Marinette County Land Information Department, My Wisconsin Woods, Northwoods Land Trust, Ruffed Grouse Society, Trout Unlimited, University of Wisconsin Extension, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Wisconsin Tribal Conservation Advisory Council, Wisconsin Woodland Owners Association, Wisconsin Young Forest Partnership