November 25, 2014 -- Canada/U.S. Report Results of Enhanced Activity to Address Forest Health
On behalf of its partners in Canada and the United States the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) today released the first report (2013/2014 Year End Report, English; 2013/2014 Year End Report, French) of results of enhanced cross-border collaboration to address forest health issues affecting the second greatest forest expanse in the world – the combined forest estate of Canada and the U.S.
“While cooperation among our two countries and especially forest scientists and forest managers in both has a long-history, the enhanced collaboration and the positive results showcased in this report point to the importance and benefits to the forests and people of both nations when that cooperation is more strategic,” said Endowment President Carlton Owen. “As we’ve seen with recent cases involving Ebola, it is vitally important that people focus on cooperation and rapid sharing of information to effect positive results. The forests of North America are benefitting from just such collaboration.”
November 19, 2014 -- Endowment Elects New Board Members and Officers for 2015
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) this past week welcomed the addition of two new members to its Board of Directors -- Andrea Tuttle of Arcata, California, and John T. Cooper, Jr. of College Station, Texas.
In addition two members were re-elected for three-year terms – John Kulhavi of White Lake, Michigan, and Jim Hoolihan of Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Officers being re-elected to terms for 2015 are Tamar Datan, Vice Chair of Leesburg, Virginia; and Jon Voigtman, Treasurer of Summit, New Jersey. John Weaver of Augusta, Georgia continues as the Board Chairman for the second year of a two-year term.
October 3, 2014 -- Survey Results Rank Priority Needs for Improving Forest Health and Creating New Markets for Low-Value Wood
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment), the USDA Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI (FPL), and the Georgia Southern University Herty Advanced Materials Development Center, Savannah, GA (Herty) today released the results of a survey designed to aid the Consortium for Advanced Wood-to-Energy Solutions (CAWES) in establishing its near-term work priorities.
“We asked experts in the wood-to-energy sector to rank the highest priority needs that must be addressed in research and development as well as emerging production facilities to advance market readiness and commercialization of torrefied wood -- a product with significant potential to create family-wage jobs, enhance forest health, and provide a new green energy product,” said Endowment President & CEO Carlton Owen. “This work is the first step in ensuring that we target our limited financial and human resources to those areas that offer the greatest benefit to advancing the objective.”
September 18, 2014 -- Nancy Natoli Élan Award for Innovation in Land Conservation Winners Announced
Bob Barnes works the hallways of Washington, DC, pressing the need for land conservation to help protect military readiness and training. Just southwest of Darien, Georgia, the Townsend Bombing Range Encroachment Partnering Team has helped conserve more than 30,000 acres essential for air training exercises for the Marines, Georgia Air National Guard, and America’s allies. Both are winners of the inaugural Nancy Natoli Élan Award for Innovation in Land Conservation.
September 17, 2014 -- Partnership Selects Cellulosic Nanomaterial Proposal
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment) today announced the selection of nine scientific proposals designed to advance the commercialization of Cellulosic Nanomaterials (CN). The projects are being funded through P3Nano – a public-private partnership founded by the Endowment and the USDA Forest Service (USFS) with federal matching funds being provided by the Forest Service’s State and Private Forestry and Research and Develop branches and work coordinated with the USFS Forest Products Laboratory. The initial projects total more than $3 million in partnership funding.
Through a review process that included experts in business, government, and academia with extensive experience in CN, proposals were selected from 65 submissions requesting more than $20 million.
Carlton Owen, Chair of the P3Nano Steering Committee and President of the Endowment stated, “Our partnership is committed to finding new high-value products that build on the renewability of the nation’s forests. Cellulosic nanomaterials offer the promise of not only advanced green products for a more sustainable future but they do so while putting Americans to work in family-wage jobs at the same time that we advance the health and vitality of forests.”
September 8, 2014 -- Torrefaction Report and Second Survey Available
The Consortium for Advanced Wood-to-Energy Solutions (CAWES) today released an Executive Summary report from the Consortium’s recent kick-off meeting in Atlanta. In addition, the CAWES Steering Committee asked for input on the second of two brief surveys designed to assess the state of torrefaction of woody biomass in the U.S. This survey which is open until September 18, will aid in determining the range of organizations, personnel, and specialized equipment dedicated to advancing torrefaction. The prior survey, which will be available until September 15, will help CAWES set priorities and work plans.
September 5, 2014 -- Identifying Priorities for Commercialization of Torrefied Wood Products
The Consortium for Advanced Wood-to-Energy Solutions (CAWES) today released a brief survey seeking input on challenges and knowledge gaps to commercialization of torrefied wood products. Those wishing to add their perspectives may do so using the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/CAWES To be considered responses should be completed by noon EDST, September 15.
CAWES is an open-platform collaborative of institutions in the public and private sectors representing green energy, forest management, research, philanthropy and private industry committed to advancing economically-viable, scalable, distributed wood-to-energy solutions that stimulate forest restoration and rural economic development through research and application of advanced wood-to-energy solutions.
Founding partners of CAWES include Georgia Southern University’s Herty Advanced Materials Development Center of Savannah, GA; the USDA Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory , Madison, WI; and the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment). The Forest Service and the Endowment have committed $4 million to jump-start the initiative.
Torrefaction is a mild form of pyrolysis—a thermochemical process to decompose organic material at elevated temperatures in the absence of oxygen. The process drives off water and volatile compounds from biomass leaving a more energy-dense product.
August 27, 2014 -- Raging Forest Fires Demand Breakthrough Solutions: Consortium to Seek Advanced Wood-to-Energy Solutions for Enhanced Forest Health and Job Growth in Rural America
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment), the USDA Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory, Madison, WI (FPL) and the Georgia Southern University Herty Advanced Materials Development Center, Savannah, GA (Herty) meeting today in Atlanta with nearly three-dozen industry and university experts announced the launch of the Consortium for Advanced Wood-to-Energy Solutions (CAWES). The consortium’s goal is to spearhead development of commercially-viable, advanced wood-to-energy products that can be produced from low-value trees and forest residues that all-too-often compromise forest health and increase the frequency of wildfires.
The Endowment and the Forest Service, via its State & Private Forestry division, have “jump started” the consortium with a $4 million investment designed to identify and fill critical research, development, and deployment needs in launching successful commercial biomass-to-energy products operations.
August 5, 2014 -- Department of Defense Grants Protect Groundwater, Forests, Farmlands, and Wetlands
Two new grant awards will help protect compatible land uses around military installations and conserve at-risk species and natural resources in support of military readiness. The grants were awarded through the 2014 Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration Initiative Challenge (REPI) Program. The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) helped administer the 2014 REPI Challenge Program as a service to the Department of Defense.
The two REPI awards totaling $5 million will leverage an additional $14.17 million to help protect more than 8,100 acres. A $4 million award will permanently restrict development on 5,900 acres of ranchland near Ft. Huachuca, Arizona. This buffer will help protect more than 160,000 annual air operations, slow the proliferation of electromagnetic interference on an 800 square mile area, and prevent development of 1,400 new water wells, conserving scarce groundwater resources that benefit people and the environment.
The second grant, of $1 million, will help protect 2,259 acres of forests, wetlands, and farmlands near Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland. This land is part of an 8,500 acre wildlife corridor along the Nanticoke River. Undeveloped areas at this site reduce noise and safety concerns, which can prevent costly restrictions and delays to training and testing at one of the Navy’s premiere testing and training facilities.
“The REPI team galvanizes an impressive array of contributors and partners and supports projects that provide great benefits to natural resources, the military, and tax-payers” noted Peter Stangel, Senior Vice President at the Endowment. “The 2014 REPI Challenge projects also reflect the spirit of the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership, which brings together the Departments of Interior and Agriculture to work with the Department of Defense on projects of mutual interest.”
July 7, 2014 -- Endowment Aids Next Generation of Timber Harvesters
A modest grant from the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities to Natural Capital Investment Fund (NCIF) is helping to ensure a brighter future timber harvesting and hauling. NCIF today announced a loan to help two brothers -- Will (age 26) and Wesley (age 24) Coleman of Richburg, SC -- buy equipment for their company. The loan to Coleman Brothers Logging, LLC is designed to enhance production and profitability.
June 23, 2014 -- New Award Memorializes Land Conservation Leader
Nancy Natoli’s job at the Department of Defense’s Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration Program (REPI) was to support “…military sustainability by addressing and removing restrictions to allow commanders the greatest flexibility to ensure our military men and women can test, train, and operate now and into the future.” She did that with a passion and commitment that benefited not only America’s warfighters, but also those who work daily to protect our Nation’s conservation lands and natural resources. The Nancy Natoli Élan Award for Innovation in Land Conservationcelebrates Nancy’s spirit, achievements, and impact on the land conservation community.
“This annual award recognizes individuals, teams, or organizations, which, in Nancy’s spirit, have taken existing, undersized land conservation opportunities and tweaked them for unexpected or outsized results, or identified and implemented new land conservation opportunities,” said Peter Stangel, Senior Vice President at the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment), one of several of Nancy’s colleagues who helped develop the award.
To read more and to submit a nomination, click here.
May 16, 2014 -- Hoolihan Elected to Endowment's Board of Directors
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) announced today that James “Jim” Hoolihan of Grand Rapids, Minnesota, has been elected to its Board of Directors. “As an institution approaching its eighth anniversary and a near 100% rotation from our inaugural Board, it is vitally important that we attract people with relevant skills and experience,” said Endowment President Carlton Owen. “To gain someone with Jim’s passion for of our mission and at the same time with deep experience in the rural philanthropic world is indeed a double blessing,” he continued.
“From my former position with the Blandin Foundation I have had the opportunity to watch the Endowment emerge and grow into an impactful player in the working forest conservation and rural economic development space and I am humbled to now play an active role in its continued evolution,” Hoolihan said. “This role will allow me to continue to engage in my passion for aiding rural, forest-rich places while reaching beyond my roots in the Lake States.”
May 15, 2014 -- Ground-Breaking Program Launched to Aid Timber Harvesters and Haulers
One of the best-known names in tree-growing and forest stewardship is the first forest products company in America to participate in a new program that will boost the economic vitality and sustainability of the nation’s 10,000 independent timber harvesters and haulers. Weyerhaeuser has teamed up with the Southern Loggers Cooperative, the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities and the Natural Capital Investment Fund to launch a program that will significantly improve access to cost-effective diesel fuel.
Under terms of the new program, Weyerhaeuser has agreed to provide a financial guarantee that will assist the Southern Loggers Cooperative in expanding its network of logger-owned and operated diesel fuel depots in areas where the company has a significant operating presence. The guarantee is designed to mitigate the cost risk associated with establishing fuel depots. It specifies that should any of Weyerhaeuser’s mills in an identified region close within seven years, the SLC would recoup all or part of its establishment costs. After the agreement is signed, the level of commitment will decline each year until the end of year seven, when the agreement sunsets.
“Our primary business is growing trees and providing raw materials to our converting mills and others in the forest products industry,” said Adrian Blocker, Weyerhaeuser’s senior vice president, Lumber. “But we’re totally dependent upon the network of mostly family-owned small businesses to get raw materials from forests to the mill. The SLC’s ten-year history of developing and servicing diesel fuel depots and passing significant financial savings on to its members is one of the most exciting and beneficial developments we’ve seen. We are happy to do our small part to help them advance their model, and we hope other companies also will consider participating in this innovative program.”
May 13, 2014 -- 2014 Special Projects Intern Joins Endowment
Coleman Allums, a recent graduate of Furman University, Greenville, SC, is the 2014-2015 Special Project Intern at the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment). He will work with the Endowment for one year beginning immediately.
Allums graduated cum laude from Furman in May with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sustainability Science and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics. During his time at Furman, Allums was heavily involved with the Shi Center for Sustainability as a Mellon Fellow and Student Farm Manager. He has had significant roles in multiple long-term research initiatives at Furman, all of which sought to integrate analyses of conservation and resource use with sociopolitical and economic considerations. As an Endowment Intern, Allums will draw heavily upon this work, as well as previous work with the City of Decatur, GA, the City of Greenville, SC, and the Atlanta Local Food Initiative.
“Interns are an integral part of the Endowment’s work and function,” said Peter Stangel, Senior Vice President. “They bring fresh thinking, high energy, and new perspectives to our business. Each intern undertakes an independent project that advances some aspect of our work, while also sharpening their skills. We are delighted to have someone with Coleman’s experience as part of our team.”
About his work with the Endowment, Allums said, “I am excited and honored to have been selected as the new Intern at the Endowment. I am eager to put my skills and experience to work for an organization that demonstrates such commitment to practical sustainability and meaningful policy.”
Since the Endowment’s inception in late 2006, the formal internship program has played a vital role in retaining a lean staff model, while simultaneously offering hands-on experience to newly-minted professionals. Furman University has been the source of the largest number of interns to date.
April 30, 2014 -- Commercialization of Cellulosic Nanomaterial Request for Proposals
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment) today announced a Request for Proposals (RFP) to advance the commercialization of cellulosic nanomaterial through P3Nano – a public-private partnership founded with the USDA Forest Service Forest Products Laboratory. The partnership has dedicated about $3 million to fund proposals that rapidly advance the commercialization of this promising technology through application in green products of the future. P3Nano will accept proposals from any qualified individual, university, company, or research organization.
Cellulose nano crystals and fibrils are simply natural structural building units that are abundant, renewable, sustainable, and originate from trees. Materials at the nanoscale possess unique properties and can facilitate the development of new, high-value products such as: packaging, automotive components, paper and paperboard, cement, polymer composites, medical applications, defense applications, electronics, and aircraft components. Cellulosic nanomaterial has the potential to create additional demand for wood-based products and open markets for low value wood generated from forest restoration efforts. Expanding and healthy forest product markets help keep forests as forests while helping to ensure their health.
Cellulosic nanomaterial has exceptional strength and is considerably lighter weight and less expensive compared to many other competing materials. A nanometer is one millionth of a meter or about 1/100,000th the width of a human hair. When products are generated from woody cellulose at the nanoscale they possess novel properties that offer new opportunities to create products of the future, which come from a renewable, sustainable material.
Persons or organization’s wishing to submit a proposal should view the RFP and respond by the review deadline of July 1, 2014.
While P3Nano is open to a broad range of proposals, priority will be given to:
Environmental health and safety of cellulosic nanomaterial
Fundamental studies on cellulose surfaces focused on improving the interface between cellulose particles and typical composite resins
Development of photonic and electronic enabled materials using cellulose nanomaterial
Manufacturing cost analysis including +/- 30 capital cost estimate, mass and energy balance and cost sensitivity analysis for production of a cellulose nanomaterial; and,
Other new/novel applications of cellulose nanomaterial
P3Nano has already awarded its foundational grant focusing on the environmental health and safety of cellulosic nanomaterial, making the understanding of the environmental impacts and public safety of the material a top priority.
Michael Goergen, Director of P3Nano noted, “Our partnership is designed to help keep America’s forests and forest-based economy healthy and sustainable through the development and use of wood-based fiber for a wide-range of commercial products. Advances in cellulosic nanotechnology will help diversify the economy; create new family-supporting jobs; provide materials for a new green economy, and contribute to critical forest restoration needs of working forests across all ownerships.” He emphasized that P3Nano’s over-riding objective in its first three years is to facilitate the commercialization of cellulosic nanomaterial in the United States.
March 10, 2014 -- Symposium Highlights Watershed Protection Benefits
Protecting and managing forested watersheds to help ensure water supplies and to reduce drinking water treatment and storage costs is the theme of an upcoming symposium at the American Water Works Association’s 2014 Sustainable Water Management Conference, to be held March 29 – April 2 in Denver, Colorado. The Symposium is being organized by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment).
“About two-thirds of the fresh water in the U.S. originates in a forested watershed,” notes Carlton Owen, the Endowment’s President and CEO. “Healthy, well-managed forests produce clean water. Increasing evidence suggests that clean water costs less to treat and store. It’s therefore in the best economic interests of water consumers to ensure that their forested watersheds are protected and well-managed.”
Presentations at the symposium will provide first-hand examples of forested watershed protection benefits around the country. Todd Gartner, Senior Associate & Natural Infrastructure for Water Manager at the World Resources Institute, will speak on the economic benefits of forested watershed protection and management. Gartner recently co-authored Natural Infrastructure – Investing in Forested Landscapes for Source Water Protection in the United States, the most comprehensive review of the subject to date. Jeff Hughes, Director of the Environmental Finance Center at the School of Government, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, will describe watershed finance partnerships in the Upper Neuse River of North Carolina, which provides water to Raleigh. Raleigh recently created a small watershed protection fee that supports watershed protection efforts. Tracy Mehan, a Principal at The Cadmus Group, Inc., and a watershed protection consultant to the Endowment, will review national efforts to develop funding sources for source water protection and talk about “beneficiary pays” approaches to watershed protection and management. Adam Carpenter, Regulatory Analyst with the American Water Works Association, will moderate the symposium.
The water sector is facing a progressive period in which water management is being completely re-examined. New technologies and management approaches are allowing water utilities to diversify their water portfolios as never before. This year, the Sustainable Water Management Conference will present solutions for a variety of issues and challenges facing the water sector, including direct potable reuse, managing stormwater in the urban environment, integrated watershed management planning, balancing water conservation with revenue needs, green infrastructure, and more.
The Endowment’s “Healthy Watersheds through Healthy Forests” Initiative focuses on supporting community-driven efforts to protect their forested watersheds. Through a partnership with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service it co-funded the Raleigh effort that resulted in creation of a watershed protection fee. The Endowment is also partnering with the American Water Works Association and others to advance watershed protection within the water community.
February 28, 2014 -- Endowment and Partners Announce Pilot Program in South Carolina Designed to Aid Timber Harvesters and Haulers
The most under-appreciated and yet critically-important link in the forest products industry value chain – from tree grower to end consumer -- is comprised of nearly 10,000 small, independent business contractors – America’s timber harvesters and haulers (a.k.a. “loggers”). The folks who harvest mature trees and transport them to a converting mill.
“Since our earliest days as an entity dedicated to keeping forests as forests and working to advance family-supporting jobs in rural forest-rich communities, we’ve sought ways to aid the nation’s hard working timber producers,” said U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities President Carlton Owen. “We think we’ve landed on one of the most direct and impactful ways to do that by partnering with the Southern Loggers Cooperative (SLC), the South Carolina Timber Producers Association (SCTPA) and the Natural Capital Investment Fund (NCIF) to extend the reach of SLC’s system of fuel depots.”
February 12, 2014 -- The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities Releases 2013 Annual Report
“Our 7th Annual Report reflects the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities’ (the Endowment) unique “playbook” for supporting the North American forest industry by adding value to forests,” notes President Carlton Owen. “Like a successful sports team, the Endowment’s game plan hones-in on well-defined outcomes, team play, and taking calculated risks. Winning for us means systemic, transformative, and sustainable change to improve the health of America’s forests and the communities and millions of people that depend upon them.”
Highlights from the Endowment’s 2013 successes that are featured in the Annual Report include: Planting the first American chestnut genetically modified to be disease and blight resistant; embarking on the next frontier for the forest industry and green products—nanotechnology; seeking new ways to help minority landowners enhance stewardship of their forests; hosting the second Canada/U.S. Forest Health Summit to enhance strategic collaboration for the citizens and forests of both countries, and; joining the Southern Loggers Cooperative to invest in diesel depots to improve timber harvester’s economic viability.
“America’s forests and the thousands of products they produce have driven our country’s growth and prosperity for centuries,” Owen said. “The Endowment seeks to continue sustainable use of our forests by “doing what other’s can’t or won’t.” We are not afraid to tackle the toughest issues faced by our forests and the forest industry. In collaboration with a wide-range of public and private teammates, we are working for a brighter future for our most important natural resource.”
The 2013 Annual Report is available as a PDF here.
January 29, 2014 -- Report Notes New Investment in Research and Development Necessary If Forest Industry to Have Bright Future
In tough times companies and governments look to cut costs. Unfortunately, those cuts may come at the expense of future opportunities, such as new product development. A new report released today finds that the forest products manufacturing industry invests less than one-seventh as much as the average U.S. manufacturing sector, seriously undermining the industry’s capacity to remain viable in the face of intense, global competition. The report, A New Model for Forest Sector Research and Development in the United States, was released by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment).
“In an age when more and more consumers are looking to use green, sustainable products, the forest products industry has the potential to be among the nation’s biggest growth sectors,” said Endowment President Carlton Owen. “But, this isn’t likely to happen without a more strategic and collaborative investment in research and development for state-of-the-art science such as green-building and wood-based nanotechnology.”
“America has for decades been the world’s leader in innovation in the forest products sector,” Owen continued. “That leadership is rooted in on-going research and development. Without a new commitment to research and development, and a new model for harnessing the power of public-private partnerships, the outlook for the forest products sector is uncertain at best.”
“In a post-recession economy where literally hundreds of sawmills have closed and more than 40% of the nation’s pulp and paper mills have been permanently shuttered just since 1990, this report should serve as a wake-up call for the forest industry and the broader U.S.-based forestry sector,” said report author Dr. Robert Kellison, Professor Emeritus at North Carolina State University. “If we are to have a bright future we must develop new, more sustainable models to re-light the fires of innovation,” he continued.
The report reveals that some of America’s strongest international competitors sustain a vibrant research and development initiative through public-private partnerships where industry and government collaborate. Kellison notes that current work led by the Endowment and the USDA Forest Service could serve as a model for building an approach that fits the U.S. system. Their collaboration focuses on forest biotechnology to address burgeoning forest health issues and more recently, a commitment to look at wood-based nanotechnology.
January 27, 2014 -- Results of New Study Suggests Ways to Enhance Payment for Energy Value When Harvesting, Hauling, and Selling Woody Biomass for Fuel
Wood is the oldest form of raw material used to generate energy. Yet, the fact that trees have low energy density relative to other fuels and that in its natural state wood is usually one-half water by weight, challenges its competitive value in many places.
Results of a new study – “Balancing Biomass Harvesting and Drying Tactics with Delivered Payment Practice” - released today by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) suggest that some relatively low tech approaches enhanced by modern measurement systems could help change that. “We asked scientists at North Carolina State University to explore ways to lower the cost of transporting waste wood for energy and to consider better ways to link energy value to purchase price,” said Endowment President Carlton Owen.
The NC State team looked at ways to lower moisture content in the woody material before it was delivered to a buyer. The team quickly abandoned “in transit” drying whereby moisture content would be reduced in the vans hauling chipped materials and instead turned to low-tech but very effective approaches to just leaving the material in the forest for a period of time and letting Mother Nature do the job. “Working with the natural drying processes proved to be the most efficient means,” said Owen.
January 10, 2014 -- Endowment, USDA Forest Service Sign Master MOU to Enhance Long-Term Partnership
Carlton Owen, President and CEO of the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (Endowment), today signed a master agreement with USDA Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. The Endowment and the Forest Service have collaborated on numerous projects since the Endowment’s creation in 2006. This new master agreement reflects the importance of this partnership and opens the door for expanded collaboration on a range of initiatives that are critical for the future of working forests.
"This agreement affirms the Endowment’s value as a trusted ally to the Forest Service. We complement each other’s mission, operations, and staff, and we both benefit in many ways from the partnership. By leveraging each other’s resources, we deliver more cost-effective, higher impact results to America’s forests and the millions of people who depend upon them,” said Owen.
The Forest Service and the Endowment have partnered on a number of projects over the years including forest health, plumbing the potential of biotechnology to address America’s burgeoning forest health challenges, bringing together the Canadian and U.S. forest sectors for international collaboration, reaching out to underserved landowners, wood-to-energy, conservation easements, and much more. In fact, the MOU comes within days of Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack’s announcement of the latest collaboration between the two organizations – the establishment of a broad-ranging public/private partnership to advance creation and adoption of Earth-friendly nanomaterials produced from wood.
When commenting on outcomes of joint efforts Owen stated, “Our track record shows what can happen when federal efforts and dollars are matched from the private and NGO sectors.” He continued, “To keep our nation’s forests as forests and to keep them healthy we need robust markets, creative thinking and sustained collaborative efforts to tend these important resources. Our joint work brings new perspectives and funding to the Forest Service that will help us grow our economy, grow jobs in rural America, and ultimately, grow more and healthier forests.”
“The mission of the Endowment is to work collaboratively with a wide-range of partners in the public and private sectors to advance systemic, transformative, and sustainable change for the health and vitality of the nation’s working forests and forest-reliant communities,” said Owen. “Agreements like this one help us bring change through the entire forest sector and make for a brighter future for our forests and all of us who depend upon them.”