Upper Trinity Watershed – Working Forest Conservation Easement
Issues: Watersheds, Wild Lands, Wildlife
Partners: Pacific Forest Trust, Sierra Nevada Conservancy, The Watershed Center, Trinity Public Utilities District, Trinity River Lumber Company, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Yurok Tribe
Airport Origin : Redding, CA
Educate stakeholders on a proposal to protect 11,000 acres of private forestlands in the headwaters of the Trinity River. Conduct an overflight of the project region with public officials, Tribal officials, the utility district, conservationists, and USFWS to provide the aerial perspective and educate on the proposed conservation.
The Upper Trinity Watershed is an incredibly biodiverse and beautiful region. The cool waterways sustain fish, plants, and wildlife in a 'world biodiversity hotspot', an area that has an incredibly high level of endemic species inhabiting an anthropogenically altered space. The Trinity River supported the Yurok and Hoopa people for millennia. Their identity is intertwined with the river that was originally called the Hoopa River.
The soils in the Trinity Headwaters area are unstable from years of extensive logging and have high erosion risk. With increased fire danger, the river and its fish are threatened by sediment pollution.
EcoFlight's partners, Pacific Forest Trust and Watershed Research and Training Center (WRTC), are working with other groups to protect the region by obtaining a working forest conservation easement. This will protect 11,000 acres of private forestlands located in the headwaters of the Trinity River. Almost ten percent of the Upper Trinity Headwaters will be conserved through this partnership with private landowners, a timber company, Pacific Forest Trust, and WRTC.
The easement will enhance the natural identity of local communities through better forest management that will support water resources, wildlife, recreation, the statewide economy, and increase local job opportunities in ecosystem restoration. The Trinity Headwaters Project is a unique opportunity to empower local Trinity County residents and help them be involved in the stewardship of this critical forest area that will provide diverse and far-reaching public benefits.