Snohomish County Healthy Forest Project
Snohomish County, and Forterra, are launching a new community stewardship program to restore and care for the forested parks and natural areas managed by the County. The framework and structure of the program will follow Forterra’s Green City Partnership model, used in 14 cities across the Puget Sound.
Healthy forested parks and greenspaces have the power to strengthen neighborhoods, provide safe access to nature, offer numerous valuable environmental benefits, and play a critical role in supporting salmon and a healthy Puget Sound. Without a coordinated effort to restore and care for our forests, we are at risk of losing many benefits these forests and natural areas provide.
Healthy forest benefits
- Improve air and water quality
- Reduce stormwater runoff and erosion
- Buffer noise
- improve property values
- Create habitat for wildlife
- Improve mental and physical health
- Convert carbon dioxide to oxygen and reduce global warming
Snohomish County owns approximately 11,704 acres of forested open space. Phase 1 of this pilot will focus on 1,000 acres of parkland shown in the map above. The program start-up process will include:
- Assessment of forest health conditions of the identified 1,000 acres of parks and natural areas
- Community outreach and engagement to guide project prioritization and implementation
- Developing a 20-year plan to share the forest health assessment results and guide restoration and community engagement efforts
- Implementation of on the ground projects with a volunteer programs to organize local neighbors and community groups to plant trees, remove invasive plant species and meet restoration goals.
Building a Partnership
Through this new program, the Snohomish County Healthy Forest Project will partner with local communities to recruit, train and support volunteer stewards to lead forest restoration projects in one of the priority parks. Ultimately, the county aims to build a network of healthy urban forests and a strong culture of community stewardship, leadership, and partnership to support a healthy Puget Sound.
Take Action! Coming soon:
- Community input survey will be available online (TBD, Nov 2019)
- Open House (TBD, NOV/DEC 2019)
- View forest health assessment results in the identified parks (Nov/Dec 2019)
- Forest restoration project, training, and volunteer events (Early 2020)
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