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Boreal Community Media

USDA FS Invests $545,000 to Improve Forest Conditions and Water Quality in MN

Aug 30, 2023 09:32AM ● By Editor
From the USDA Forest Service - August 29, 2023

Milwaukee, WI (August 29, 2023) – The USDA Forest Service is investing $545,000 to support two forest restoration projects on non-federal forest lands in Minnesota. The Landscape Scale Restoration competitive grant program supports projects that achieve the shared goals of the Forest Service, sovereign tribal nations and the states to protect and restore forests across jurisdictional boundaries.

“Threats to forests like wildfires, insects and disease do not stop at jurisdictional boundaries, which is why these investments in healthy and resilient forests extend beyond boundary lines,” said Forest Service Chief Randy Moore. “These grants are critical for improving the nation’s forests that provide a range of environmental, social and economic benefits to the American people.” 


Minnesota’s 2023 Forest Service Eastern Region Landscape Scale Restoration Grant Projects:

Grantee: Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Forestry Division

Federal investment: $260,000

Project: Expanding Woodland Stewardship and Technical Assistance: Connecting Landowners to Modern Information

Project Summary: Breaking the barrier of obtaining forest inventory information on private lands using web-based solutions is key to collaborative management of forested landscapes, especially in the face of climate change. Leveraging several existing State Forest Action Plan Strategies, the MN DNR will work with all professional foresters collaborating with private landowners to collect forest inventory data. This project will build a robust forest inventory and streamline woodland stewardship plan mapping and monitoring, resulting in improved forest management.

Grantee: Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Forestry Division

Federal investment: $285,000

Project: Protecting Priority Lakes in the Upper Mississippi Basin: Managing Forests for Water Quality Protection

Project Summary: Protecting water quality in the 26 best fishing lakes in the Upper Mississippi River Basin (UMRB) of Minnesota is within reach. People love these pine studded shores for the juxtaposition of diverse forests, clean waters & world-class fisheries. It is no mistake that these high-quality resources exist together. Forests protect water quality. They absorb rainfall, reduce runoff, and improve infiltration. MN DNR Fisheries research revealed that phosphorus concentrations in lakes are directly related to land disturbance and maintaining 75% forestland cover in a watershed is critical for water quality.

The Forest Service will invest a total of $16.2 million in fiscal year 2023 across the nation to help tribes, state agencies, local governments and partners restore healthy, resilient, climate-adapted forests. A complete list of funded projects for fiscal year 2023 is available on the Forest Service LSR website:


For a map of previously funded LSR projects:

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