Central Appalachian forests are the water tower for the mid-Atlantic, filtering the headwaters of rivers and streams that provide drinking water to Washington, DC.
Western Maryland Forests Central Appalachian forests are the water tower for the mid-Atlantic, filtering the headwaters of rivers and streams that provide drinking water to Washington, DC. © Kent Mason

Stories in Maryland/DC

OktoberForest in Maryland and DC

Celebrating the connections between clean water, great beer and the forests that make it all possible.

If you like beer, you should love forests.

Beer has four main ingredients: water, grain, hops and yeast. While water may seem like beer’s simplest ingredient, there's a lot involved in getting that clean water to our taps.

OktoberForest is a month-long celebration of clean water, great beer and the forests that make it all possible.
Love Beer? Love Forests! OktoberForest is a month-long celebration of clean water, great beer and the forests that make it all possible. © The Nature Conservancy

Clean, plentiful water depends on healthy surrounding natural areas, like forests. Forty percent of the world’s usable water is stored and filtered through forests. From the tree canopy all the way down to root systems, every part of a forest plays a critical role in cleaning and protecting our water supply. 

The Central Appalachians are the water tower for the mid-Atlantic. More than 6 million people in the D.C. metro area get their drinking water from the Potomac River, which flows from the cool mountain streams that form and converge in the forested mountains to the west.

It’s not an obvious connection: beer and forests. But, we hope the next time you enjoy a pint, you give a nod to the trees.

HEALTHY FORESTS = CLEAN WATER = GREAT BEER Beer and forests may seem like an odd connection, but forests provide 40% of the world's usable water, beer's main ingredient.

THANK YOU TO OUR PARTICIPATING BREWERS FOR SUPPORTING HEALTHY FORESTS AND CLEAN WATER!

Owner Cory McCagh at work at 1812 Brewery.
1812 Brewery Owner Cory McCagh at work at 1812 Brewery. © 1812 Brewery

1812 Brewery
Cumberland, MD

1812 Brewery

1812 Brewery is the first and only farm brewery in Allegany County, Maryland. The family-owned and operated craft brewery and brewhouse are located in a repurposed barn built in 1812. Nestled in the mountains of Western Maryland, 1812 Brewery evolved out of a passion for the region and a love for great beer. Their goal is to bring beer brewing back to Cumberland, Maryland and to provide a relaxed and friendly atmosphere for the community.

1812 is very pleased to partner with OktoberForest this year!

Displaying hops, one of beer's key ingredients, during a tour of DC Brau.
DC Brau Displaying hops, one of beer's key ingredients, during a tour of DC Brau. © DC Brau

DC Brau
Washington, D.C.

DC Brau

DC Brau does their part to reduce impacts to the environment. From the beginning, all DC Brau brews have been packaged in aluminum cans to both maintain the quality of the beer inside and to encourage recycling after consumption. Cans also require less packaging material than other options like glass bottles and weigh far less than their counterparts, thereby saving energy on shipping. Additionally, DC Brau has partnered with local farmers, who reuse spent grain for livestock feed, and with local restaurants, who turn the spent grain into bread and pizza crusts for their customers.

DC Brau is a proud to be an OktoberForest partner!

Committed to providing quality beer in an ecologically responsible manner.
Tall Tales Brewing Company Committed to providing quality beer in an ecologically responsible manner. © Tall Tales Brewing Company
Tall Tales Brewing Company

Situated on 22 acres on Maryland's Eastern Shore, Tall Tales Brewing Company strives to use sustainable practices throughout all their operations. A large part of Tall Tales' commitment to quality is providing delicious beer in an ecologically responsible manner. As a green brewery, all beer and food at Tall Tales is made from scratch using whole ingredients. 

Co-founders Brendan and Bailey O'Leary at Rockville, MD's True Respite Brewing Co.
True Respite Brewing Co. Co-founders Brendan and Bailey O'Leary at Rockville, MD's True Respite Brewing Co. © True Respite Brewing Co.
True Respite Brewing Co.

Rockville, Maryland's True Respite Brewing Company values environmental sustainability and is constantly looking for ways to reduce their waste and energy use.  They capture their cooling water and use it to brew their next batch of beer to reduce energy and materials. True Respite sends all of their spent grain to a local farmer to feed his livestock. They opted to can their product rather than bottle it, and are always on the lookout for ways to reduce their environmental footprint while producing a diverse array of the highest quality beers.

Aerial view of Sideling Hill Creek Preserve.
Western Maryland Forests Aerial view of Sideling Hill Creek Preserve. © Kent Mason

Healthy Forests

The health and connectivity of our Central Appalachian forests benefits both people and nature. Forest resiliency provides nature the opportunity to adapt and thrive in the face of climate change.

Across the country, and right here at home, our forests are under pressure and under threat. The Maryland/DC chapter is working to protect forests by:

  • Using science to better understand forest health and the impacts of climate change.
  • Actively working in western Maryland’s Central Appalachians forests to keep them connected, healthy, and resilient.
  • Helping private landowners find information, financial resources or expert advice that best meet their current needs to improve forest health and wildlife habitat on their land.  
  • Collaborating with state and federal partners to ensure we’re using best management practices on our preserves.
  • Returning fire to the landscape through controlled burns. The benefits that fire can bring to a landscape are remarkably varied. Many species of plants and trees have evolved to be fire-adapted, and may not grow or disperse their seeds until after a forest has burned.  
  • Treating trees against harmful pests. In 2017 we collaborated with Maryland DNR to proactively treat small clusters of ash trees along the Nanticoke River with an intravenious injection of pesticide to prevent infestation by the emerald ash borer.

Help Us Plant a Billion Trees

Donate

Our Plant a Billion Trees campaign is a forest restoration effort with the goal of planting one billion trees across the planet. One BILLION is a big number, but we know we can do it with your help. Your support will put trees in the ground, creating healthy forests and fresh water.