The Alliance directs Chesapeake Forest Fund contributions into forest restoration actions using rigorous methodologies that produce successful and measurable outcomes and improve the overall health and economic wellbeing of local communities throughout the Chesapeake region.
The Alliance uniquely delivers significant benefits for each dollar invested in the Chesapeake Forest Fund by using the Alliance’s experience, capabilities, and strong partnerships to leverage a wide variety of conservation programs including environmental markets, state and federal best management practice cost-share programs, conservation easement programs, and grant programs. In addition to direct financial assistance for tree planting and forest management actions, we also use investments to test ecosystems market innovations.
Family forest and private landowners own nearly 80% of forests in the Chesapeake watershed. Therefore, much of the Chesapeake region’s clean air and water, wildlife habitat, and jobs are provided by private forests. The Fund prioritizes these private landowners and supports forest restoration and management efforts that help these private landowners retain, restore, conserve and sustainably manage for year to come the forests that keep the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed rivers and streams clean and healthy. Our streamlined and leveraged approach works well in particular for the small woodland properties owners that are typically overlooked by traditional conservation programs.
In Maryland and Virginia, the Chesapeake Forest Fund finances low interest loans for private landowners to empower them to plant trees and conserve and protect their forests with the potential to generate and sell credits for the Virginia Non-Point Source Nutrient Trading Program, Maryland Forest Conservation Program, and Maryland Critical Areas Program.