The Province has awarded $110,000 to the Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resource Society to help restore grasslands and forests in the East Kootenay and Columbia Valley, Bill Bennett, MLA for Kootenay East, announced today on behalf of Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson.
The funding more than doubles last year’s $52,000 grant and will go toward the restoration of low-elevation grasslands and open forest ecosystems on Crown land from Radium Hot Springs to the U.S. border.
Ecosystem restoration in the province’s dry forests involves logging, thinning and slashing excess trees from grassland and previously open forest sites. Once the tree density is reduced, the area can then be carefully burned to replicate natural wildfire and creates the environmental conditions that encourage the growth of native grasses and shrubs.
The Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resource Society is working with government, forestry companies, First Nations, ranchers, and guide outfitters to restore and maintain 118,500 hectares of rangeland and open forest in the southern Rocky Mountain Trench.
This year, B.C. is investing a total of $270,000 to ecosystem restoration programs in the Kootenays, Cariboo and Northern B.C.
Bill Bennett, MLA for Kootenay East –
“Not only will the government’s investment in the Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resource Society help restore unique forest and grassland ecosystems, it will also reduce wildfires risk and give local economies and extra boost. It’s great work that will have a lasting impact across the Kootenays.”
Dan Murphy, coordinator, Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resource Society –
“The Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resources Society is a founding member of the Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program and has been working proactively since 1997 with many stakeholders to restore and conserve grasslands and open forests in the Rocky Mountain Trench of southeast B.C. The Trench Society thanks the Province for their long-term and ongoing financial and staff support.”
- Restored ecosystems help to improve habitat for grassland plants, reduce wildfire risks to neighbouring communities and increase forage for wildlife and livestock.
- The Province funds restoration work on more than 4,000 hectares of Crown land each year.
Visit the Rocky Mountain Trench Natural Resource Society website: http://www.trenchsociety.com/funders.php
Find out more about the Visit the Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration Program: http://trench-er.com/about/partners/
Find out more about B.C.’s ecosystem restoration program: http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/esd/documents/EcosystemsProgramPlan.pdf