Two projects in New Hampshire will be a focus of an upcoming report by the Department of the Interior’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative designed to outline the most promising ways to reconnect Americans to the natural world. The two projects include the Northern Forests and the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, two areas that have been a primary focus for the conservation efforts of The Nature Conservancy and partner organizations.
“We are very excited that these two areas have been identified as some of the best investments in the country to conserve wildlife, protect and manage working forests, and preserve places for Granite Staters and visitors from around the world to recreate and reconnect with the natural world,” said Daryl Burtnett, New Hampshire state director for The Nature Conservancy.
“Each of these conservation focus area contribute significantly to the New Hampshire economy, and are the foundation of the unique quality of life that we enjoy,” continued Burtnett. “The preservation of these natural assets did not happen by accident, but are the result of generations of Granite Staters – working together – to conserve our natural heritage. “
Burtnett concludes that: “This report and its findings are another indication that we are doing things right here in New Hampshire. At times like these, when fiscal discipline is paramount, investments in the conservation of our natural resources upon which our health and economy rely is exactly the kind of work that should rise to the top. We are grateful for the bipartisan support of our state and federal officials for ensuring that places like the Northern Forest and the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge are protected and accessible to the people of New Hampshire.”
New Hampshire is at the heart of The Northern Forest, an area covering more than 30 million acres across NH, ME, VT and New York. The region has long been a focus for the Nature Conservancy, partner organizations and state officials due to its vast unbroken forests, wildlife habitat and recreation opportunities that play a major role in the region’s economy.
Much of the conservation success in the past has been due to smart investments made by federal partners through the Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Forest Legacy program, which has leveraged private - public efforts in the region.
Similarly, The Connecticut River is a major focus of the Conservancy’s efforts in New Hampshire and across the watershed. Working in partnership with federal, regional and in-state partners, and in particular the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, the Conservancy has worked to protect forests, wetland, and floodplains along the CT River through direct ownership and conservation easements, restoration of unique floodplain forests, improving the management of dams, and promoting habitat connectivity.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.