Lomakatsi’s Accomplishment Highlights for 2012
Lomakatsi had another great year in 2012 restoring ecosystems and sustaining communities throughout southern Oregon and northern California. It was a busy year including 55 active projects spanning eight Counties. We continue working collaboratively to restore thousands of acres of forests and watersheds, educate hundreds of youth in hands-on, ecological restoration education, and train and employ hundreds of people as part of our ecological workforce program, including Klamath Tribal members. To learn more about active projects, click here.
Central Umpqua-Mid Klamath Oak Habitat Conservation Project: Lomakatsi continues to lead the effort in the advancement and implementation of innovative oak habitat restoration across Douglas and Jackson counties in Oregon, crossing over state lines into Siskiyou County, California. This collaborative partnership between Lomakatsi, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Klamath Bird Observatory and over 10 additional agency and non-profit partners is working to restore and protect oak habitats across 2,000 acres of private land over the next two years. In recognition of this project’s ongoing success in achieving exemplary conservation results through public-private cooperation and community engagement, on October 18th the Partnership received a “Partners in Conservation” National award from the Department of the Interior. As the lead partner, Lomakatsi’s Director Marko Bey had the opportunity to attend the award ceremony in Washington D.C.
Klamath Tribal Ecosystem Workforce Initiative: The Klamath Tribes, Lomakatsi and The Nature Conservancy continue to build upon the 10-year Master Stewardship Agreement with the Fremont-Winema National Forest to implement landscape-scale forest and watershed restoration projects. This agreement encompasses most of the 1.2 million acres that previously constituted the Tribes’ reservation prior to termination. Under this MSA, projects are being developed and implemented by the partners, with input and contributions from community stakeholders including industry and conservation groups, through an open collaborative process. The primary goals of this collaborative effort are to restore ecosystem health and resiliency while creating employment opportunities for the Klamath Tribes’ emerging restoration workforce. The Tribes view forest restoration work as an opportunity to reduce unemployment and create new forest-related enterprises.
In 2012, in partnership with the Klamath Tribes Natural Resources Department, Lomakatsi trained and employed 15 Tribal members who treated approximately 2,500 acres. Forest and watershed restoration projects took place on public and private lands in both the Klamath and Rogue River basins. In addition, Lomakatsi and our partner the Klamath Tribes hosted an Ecological Forestry Project Design Workshop in the Black Hills to train Klamath Tribal and other Lomakatsi crew members in the ecological forestry principles of forest ecologists Dr. Norm Johnson and Dr. Jerry Franklin, authors of the Klamath Tribes’ Reservation Forest Restoration Plan.
Restoration Forestry and Fuel Hazard Reduction Program: Lomakatsi is implementing forest restoration projects across thousands of acres in Jackson and Josephine Counties through stewardship contracts and agreements with the US Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. Projects like the Ashland Forest Resiliency Stewardship Project, as one successful example, focus on restoring habitat for old growth dependent species like the Northern Spotted Owl, while reducing the threat of uncharacteristic wildfire. Forest restoration stewardship projects are occurring across seven Counties and are employing hundreds of workers.
Aquatic Habitat Restoration and Youth Education: Lomakatsi’s Full Circle Schools Restoration Ecology Program continues to engage youth and community volunteers in restoring riparian areas throughout the Bear Creek watershed. By removing invasive species and replanting thousands of native trees and shrubs along regional streams, shade for native salmon and resident fish species is restored. We work directly with hundreds of students, providing hands-on service-learning and educational opportunities along riparian sites Lomakatsi has adopted for long-term stewardship. In honor of Koa Nakai Markham, thanks to the generous donations of family and friends, during 2012 work commenced on a new riparian adopted site along Neil Creek. Lomakatsi’s Youth Ecological Workforce Training Program also had another successful year. With the goal of building the next generation of ecological restoration practitioners, six Jefferson Conservation crew members were trained and employed.
Providing Technical Assistance to Forest-Based Communities, Regionally and Nationally: Working at the regional and national level, using our eight years of applied expertise, over the past year Lomakatsi has increasingly been being asked to provide consultation to the USDA Forest Service, Native American Tribes, city municipalities, and community-based organizations on how to effectively develop federal land stewardship agreements and contracts. By sharing our model, not only are we expanding our organization’s vision, we are also expanding landscape scale ecosystem restoration and green job development throughout the Nation.