Forestland Preservation is the newest category of WWRP, and was implemented by legislative changes to the program in 2016. These grants help improve opportunities for forest management activity and improve the long-term growth and harvest of timber. They also help protect many different kinds of forests, including, but not limited to, large-scale industrial forests, small private landowner forests, community forests, and tribally – or publicly-owned and managed forests.
Our featured project this month is the Rock Creek Forest, which was awarded funding in the 2017-19 capital budget, and is currently in progress. The Columbia Land Trust applied for this grant to conserve around 360 acres of working forestland via a perpetual forestland conservation easement. It contains about 174 acres of Tier 1 Forest Resource Land and about 168.75 acres of Tier 2 Forest Resource Land (these terms come from the 2016 Comprehensive Growth Management Plan for Clark County, and apply to lands which are capable of long-term production of commercially significant forest products).
This project will prevent fragmentation of the land and protect it from commercial development, ensuring that it continues to be managed as a working forest. The project site is located on the East Fork Lewis River and Rock Creek in northeastern Clark County and will be used as active forestland in perpetuity.