08.18.15

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Joins Celebration of Brule-St. Croix Forest Conservation Effort

“An excellent example of why the Land and Water Conservation Fund is so important for Wisconsin.”

BRULE-ST. CROIX FOREST, WI – Today U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin joined in a celebration of the completion of the largest recreational and timber land conservation project in Wisconsin history.  

Protected under a working forest conservation easement, the Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest preserves important natural resources, globally significant pine barrens habitat and a variety recreational opportunities while maintaining sustainable timber operations that support local economies in Northwest Wisconsin.

The Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest success is due in large part to funding from the Wisconsin’s Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program and the U.S. Forest Service’s Forest Legacy Program through the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF)—the federal program dedicated to the continued conservation and protection of America’s irreplaceable natural, historic, cultural and outdoor landmarks, which is set to expire on September 30.

“The Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest delivers on our shared goals of environmental protection and sustainable economic growth and is an excellent example of why the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) is so important for Wisconsin. These investments in the Badger State have served as engines of growth for local economies that face economic challenges that require long-term solutions,” said Senator Baldwin. “That is why I’m proud to cosponsor legislation to permanently reauthorize and fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund —strengthening one of the world’s most successful conservation programs, and ensuring our nation’s long lasting commitment to stewardship.”

Senator Baldwin, a champion of conservation efforts in Wisconsin, helped introduce legislation to fund and permanently authorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Established by Congress in 1965, LWCF is a visionary and bipartisan federal program that uses a percentage of proceeds from offshore oil and gas royalties for the protection of irreplaceable lands and improvement of outdoor recreation opportunities across the nation. No taxpayer dollars are used for land conservation under LWCF. The program has permanently protected nearly five million acres of public lands including forests, natural resources, state and local parks and recreation areas. In this 50th year of the LWCF, President Obama has called for full, permanent funding in his proposed budget, recognizing that LWCF is one of the nation’s most effective tools for conserving natural landscapes for public outdoor recreation use and enjoyment across the country; preserving and protecting rivers, lakes and other water resources; and expanding the interpretation of historic and cultural sites.

“The Brule St-Croix Legacy Forest project demonstrates that Wisconsin again has it right: sustainable stewardship of forestland and a healthy environment supports local jobs and provides outdoor enjoyment,” said The Conservation Fund’s Vice President, Midwest Region Tom Duffus. “This project epitomizes the best of the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund and the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and we appreciate the leadership of our federal and state elected leaders who had the vision to accomplish this win-win.”

The Conservation Fund and The Lyme Timber Company hosted the special event which was also attended by USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment Butch Blazer.