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CCPI to provide $684K to restore Kansas windbreaks, woodlands

Through the Cooperative Conservation Partnership Initiative the U.S. Department of Agriculture will provide $684,000 in financial assistance to Kansas landowners, farmers and ranchers who are interested in restoring shelterbelts, windbreaks or managing woodlands adjacent to streams and rivers during fiscal year 2014.

The funding will cover the majority of the costs of tree planting, thinning woodlands, removing old declining shelterbelt rows and the use of the heavy equipment to do it, said Bob Atchison, forester with the Kansas Forest Service.

Kansas Forest Service foresters are available to help landowners complete the technical parts of the application process including project plans.

CCPI fits nicely into renovation and restoration efforts because more than 44 percent of the 43,436 miles of shelterbelts in Kansas are in decline and are no longer providing the benefits they used to, said Larry Biles, state forester, Kansas Forest Service.

Biles said there is a significant percentage of Kansas streams that lack adequate management and forest cover, which directly contributes to bank erosion and advanced sedimentation of reservoirs, reducing Kansas’ public water supply.

The initiative operates through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, or EQIP. Any producers eligible for EQIP funding can participate in the program.

Sign-up deadline to be considered for the CCPI funding is March 21. Producers and landowners need to contact their local Natural Resources Conservation Service office to sign up. Producers are encouraged to sign up as soon as possible to provide enough time for foresters to prepare project plans before the deadline.

For more information on CCPI projects and ways to restore Kansas woodlands visit the Kansas Forest Service website, www.kansasforests.org or give them a call at 785-532-3300.

Date: 2/3/2014



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