CI WATERSHED FORESTRY
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See maps of current
and completed CTree projects.
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CTree and other forestry projects.
Cacapon Institute has long been engaged in forestry
for the purpose of improving watershed health. Our seminal
ecological baseline study of the Cacapon River concluded in 1993
that expanding the extent of forested riparian buffers was essential
to protect our home river from pollution caused by development.
Today CI supports forest protection, reforestation,
and forestry throughout the Potomac Watershed as a core part of our
mission to protect and improve water quality, as a member of the WV
Chesapeake Bay Watershed Implementation Team, as a member of the
Chesapeake Bay Program Forestry Work Group, and as Coordinator of
the Potomac Watershed Partnership. While our efforts are
widespread, much our forestry work is focused on the Potomac
Headwaters of West Virginia. Best Management Practices to protect
forests and trees in the Potomac Basin provide many benefits.
According to the
2007 Chesapeake Watershed Forestry
Strategic Plan; “Forests are the most beneficial land use for
protecting water quality due to their ability to capture, filter,
and retain water, as well as absorb pollution from the air. The Bay
watershed is currently 58% forested and contains some of the most
extensive hardwood forests in the world’s temperate latitudes.
However, forests in the Chesapeake Bay watershed are being lost at a
rate of 100 acres/day and the Bay’s water quality remains severely
In keeping with the Chesapeake Watershed Forestry
Strategic Plan and West Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay Watershed
Implementation Plan, the principals that guide CI’s forestry work
1) Apply the best science available;
2) Build programs that are sustainable and
3) Cultivate partnerships to leverage resources;
4) Utilize outreach efforts that are deliberate
and direct; and
5) Assist municipal leaders to develop both short
term and long term goals.
6) Monitor and assess projects regularly.
Watershed Implementation Team is committed to
maximizing water quality in
the Potomac Headwaters of West Virginia
by: conserving high value forests, restoring riparian forest, and
enhancing urban tree canopy cover in developed areas.
Conserve high value forests. CI will continue
to advance Forestry for the Bay and the Potomac Watershed
Partnership, deliver forest management information and expertise to
landowners, and promote the use of diverse Farm Bill programs to
support forest management (CREP, WHIP, Cacapon & Lost Rivers Land
Restoring riparian forests. CI works with the
agency members of WV’s Chesapeake Bay Tributary Team (such as the WV
Conservation Agency and WV Department of Environmental Protection)
to increase stream miles with riparian forests. We help identify
priority watershed and target buffer placement, offer technical
assistance for buffer restoration, maintenance, rehabilitation and
repair; and improve current accounting of forest buffer
Developed land forestry to enhance Urban Tree
Canopy. UTC is a measure of the trees we live with, the trees
that grace our neighborhoods, towns, parks, schools, and roadsides,
and that reduce stormwater runoff. CI is working with local
government agencies, volunteers, and schools to improve our WV UTC.
We are helping to develop land management strategies at county and
municipal levels. Strategies include assessing UTC to determine high
priority planting areas, setting UTC goals, and fostering tree
planting initiatives. These strategies are increasing the public
benefits of UTC including cleaner air, shade, and less stormwater
runoff pollution. Read more on UTC.
For more information, contact: Cacapon Institute's
Urban Forestry Coordinator
We are grateful for federal funding from the USDA-Forest Service,
the Chesapeake Bay Program, and the National Fish and Wildlife
Foundation that make our work in forestry possible.
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