Colorado Front Range Wins Landscape Restoration Grant

Uncompahgre Plateau Restoration Project Also Selected For Grant To Help Improve Forest Health and Water Quality

Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Mark Udall and Michael Bennet, along with U.S. Reps. Diana DeGette and Ed Perlmutter, today applauded the selection of Colorado Front Range Landscape Restoration Initiative to receive $1 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to promote healthier, safer and more productive public lands.

The Colorado Front Range Landscape Restoration Initiative was one of ten projects nationwide, funded at a total of $10 million, that were selected based on the recommendations of a 15-member Advisory Committee. Advisory committee members were selected based on several factors including their technical expertise, which geographic region of the country they represent and diverse backgrounds. The Uncompahgre Plateau restoration in Colorado was also selected and will receive $446,000.

“Colorado’s forests are susceptible to high intensity wildfires, which pose a serious threat to human and environmental values in the region,” Bennet said. “These projects will help reduce wildfire risk and protect watersheds and habitat for fish and wildlife species. Local and state agencies have already done a lot of great work to move these plans forward, and with this grant, Coloradans can get to work protecting the health of our forests for future generations.”

“This is welcome news, especially during wildfire season,” Senator Udall said.  “This funding will be a big boost for Colorado communities that are working hard to protect public lands from wildfire and erosion, which threaten the health and safety of millions of Coloradans.”

“Each year, wildfires threaten not only our state's beautiful forests, but also the water supply Denver's families rely upon,” said Congresswoman DeGette.  “These landscape restoration grants provide welcome protections for our communities and for our state's precious watersheds.”

“This funding will help create jobs, reduce fire hazards and preserve and protect Colorado’s beautiful forests for future generations.  I am proud to have worked with the Colorado Delegation to help local communities protect critical areas from wildfires and effects of bark beetles.  Healthy forests promote healthy communities,” stated Perlmutter.

The Colorado Front Range Landscape Restoration Initiative, which was awarded $1 million,  is located in the Arapaho, Roosevelt, Pike and San Isabel National forests, and will facilitate the treatment of 22,000 acres of forest lands to protect communities, restore watersheds, improve habitat, and create jobs along the Colorado Front Range.

The initial project was developed by the Front Range Roundtable, a diverse, regionally-based forest collaborative that has been working together for over 6 years.  The Roundtable includes representatives from local, state and federal land management agencies, non-governmental organizations, local governments, water providers and others engaged in community and watershed protection through forest restoration.