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Community collaboration

Conservation Northwest has been hard at work across Washington State to create models that unite conservationists and woods workers and rebuild and reinvest in rural communities.

Field tour to a restored forest
Field tour to a restored forest

Community collaboration is an amazing tool for rebuilding and reinvesting in rural communities and protecting and restoring Northwest forests.

"Ever increasing awareness of the effect of fire suppression and past forest management has led to an exponential increase in common ground between foresters, mill owners, conservationists, and communities. Collaboration has forged new common ground into active restoration projects in most of the forests we work on." - David Heflick, Conservation Northwest
  • As part of the Northeast Washington Forestry Coalition, Conservation Northwest works with community leaders, timber industry workers, and state and federal land managers promoting projects that protect ancient forest and roadless areas while ending years of conflict around forest management.
  • Together with the Gifford Pinchot Task Force we created Pinchot Partners with its focus on restoration projects in second-growth plantation national forests that employ local contractors while protecting old growth.
  • We helped form the Upper Yakima Watershed Action Group and today facilitate this group dedicated to restoring the function of the Upper Yakima watershed. The partnership groups share information, coordinate and leverage efforts, and collaborate on the Upper Yakima Restoration Stewardship Project in the I-90 corridor. This project also gets volunteers into the field to restore wildlife habitat in Washington's central Cascades east of Snoqualmie Pass.

Unique efforts

The collaborative efforts we're involved in all carry the common thread of focusing on common ground activities that provide jobs and/or wood products while addressing high-priority restoration on our public lands. While Conservation Northwest prides itself on providing leadership and expert restoration knowledge for each of these groups, the success of each effort is dependent on the many varied individuals that contribute to each group. Each collaborative effort is unique in its goals and objectives. Many have emerged from opportunities rather than from conflict.

"Working for the health of rural communities is not something the environmental community considered when they set out to protect forests and wildlife, but it became a driving factor. " - Regan Nelson, Conservation Northwest

By participating in collaborative efforts, Conservation Northwest blunts the wedge that some political interests seek to drive between ecology and economy, rural and urban people, and the east and west sides of Washington state. The more that we can meet our conservation challenges with solutions instead of raw conflict, the better we sustain and build support in all things we do to protect Northwest forests and wildlife. 

Learn more about our partnerships

The Red Lodge Clearinghouse compiles information on natural resource collaboration.
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