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States in Bay Watershed Sign Chesapeake Forest Restoration Strategy


Monica Lear, DC state forester; Carl Garrison, Va. state forester; Steve Koehn, Md. state forester; Tom Tidwell, U.S. Forest Service chief; Nick DiPasquale EPA Chesapeake Bay Program director.

Maryland State foresters and their state and federal partners have signed a historic new plan to increase tree cover and improve water quality throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Maryland joined the Chesapeake Bay Program Director Nick DiPasquale and U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell to sign the Chesapeake Bay Forest Restoration Strategy.

“The Chesapeake Forest Restoration Strategy means continued and renewed support for more urban and rural forests, which will supply more clean water,” said Steve Koehn, Maryland Forest Service director.

More than 30 Federal, State, and nongovernmental organizations contributed to the strategy. It is endorsed by all seven State foresters in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Each section outlines a different way to target forest restoration in the areas of greatest opportunity that will benefit most. The focus includes wildlife and fisheries habitat, mine lands, agroforestry, urban and community forestry, and contaminated lands.

In May 2009, President Obama issued Executive Order 13508 that ushered in a new era of Federal leadership, action and accountability in protecting and restoring the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. In the resulting Executive Order implementation plan, the U.S. Forest Service committed to lead a partner-driven effort to create a Chesapeake Forest Restoration Strategy as a key supporting action.

The Maryland Forest Service restores, manages, and protects Maryland’s trees, forests, and forested ecosystems to sustain our natural resources and connect people to the land. The Maryland Forest Service manages 138,288 acres of designated State Forest and works with public and private landowners to implement sustainable stewardship plans and practices statewide.

Download the report.