Review of USFS Community-based Watershed Restoration Partnerships

Review of USFS Community-based Watershed Restoration Partnerships

Author(s): Doppelt, B., Shinn, C., Dewitt, J.

Publication Date: 2002

Location: North America


SUMMARY, ANALYSIS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS September 2002. In 1999, the USDA Forest Service initiated a program intended to demonstrate how the agency can best engage in and support a landscape (watershed) level partnership-based approach to restoration. Twelve watersheds from across the nation were initially chosen to participate in the program. Three additional watersheds were included in 2000-2001 (see Table 1 for list of projects). This report summarizes the findings of a comprehensive review of the progress achieved by these projects. Dr. Jim Sedell, Inter-Deputy Water Coordinator with the USDA Forest Service, requested that faculty at the Mark O. Hatfield School of Government at Portland State University lead the review process. The Community-based Watershed Restoration Partnerships (as the program is now called) is an ambitious effort to test new ways for the Forest Service to define and accomplish its mission and goals. The purpose is to demonstrate innovative approaches to improve water flow and quality, aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity, and forest and range conditions, and to reduce the risk of fire at a river-basin scale. Most of the fifteen projects have developed partnerships with federal, state, local, and tribal governments, communities, non-profits, private landowners, and others. Work is accomplished by using a combination of public and private money and donated time and resources. The Forest Service was the impetus in most of the projects for working collectively across ownerships to resolve watershed issues. The national headquarters of the Forest Service provided funds beyond normal levels during fiscal years 1999-2002 to most of the partnerships so that new ways of doing business could be explored. Keyword: Community-based Natural Forest Management North America

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