Speaker Series on Forestry and Climate Change
The San Juan Islands Forest Health Collaborative is pleased to present a speaker series with experts in the field of forestry and landscape resiliency in a changing climate. The first talk in the series was given by the Dean of the Oregon State University College of Forestry, Dr. Tom DeLuca. Dr. DeLuca gave a presentation to the directors of different public land agencies in San Juan County on Forestry, Fire, Climate Change, and Charcoal. To view the talk please click on this link to Dr. DeLuca's presentation.
For additional resource material on forest health including podcasts, scientific papers, articles and basic wildland firefighting information please visit our Additional Forest Health Collaborative Resources page.
The Northwest Natural Resource Group has provided a directory of local contractors for forestry products and businesses here.
The San Juan County Community Wildfire Protection Plan/Wildfire Risk Assessment can be accessed here.
San Juan Islands Forest Health Collaborative
The San Juan Islands Forest Health Collaborative is a collaboration of partner agencies working collectively to restore forests throughout San Juan County. The collaborative offers both educational and financial support to assist landowners in reducing the potential for wildfire, developing ecological diversity, and enhancing resiliency in a changing climate.
The Conservation District provides forest planning by USDA-NRCS certified planners. Visit our forest planning page here for more information.
Cost Share Program
The San Juan Islands Conservation District (SJICD) has received funding from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to assist forest landowners in San Juan County with improving forest health and wildfire resiliency. The forest health practices being targeted are based on Best Management Practices (BMPs) from the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) and focus on reducing wildfire fuels, building healthy forest and soil ecosystems that contribute to overall forest health. To learn more please visit our Forest Cost Share Program page.
San Juan Islands Research
SJICD has partnered with Wisewood Energy in order to identify a viable biomass microgrid combined heat-and-power (CHP) technology system. Utilizing locally available residual biomass as a reliable, renewable energy resource incentivizes forest management, provides a controllable energy asset for local power utilities and supports island energy independence, and helps to improve regional air quality in the San Juan Islands. Provided is the Final Summary of Biomass to Microgrid
SJICD has collaborated with Washington State University in researching ways that biochar can mitigate climate change, improve forest and soil health, decrease wildfire risk and enhance rural economies. Please find the final report, Biomass to Biochar, here. For information on the benefits of biochar in forest health and agriculture watch Biochar: Burning Away Fire.
In collaboration with OPALCO and Rainshadow Consulting LLC., the Conservation District's Island Conservation Corps (formally known as the CCC), completed a project focused on line clearing, fire prevention, biochar production, and forest health. For more information on the project please see the video below.
What is Conservation Forestry?
The past 100 years of forest management has left an excess of trees in the absence of natural and indigenous burning. Without disturbance agents like fire, forests become like a garden with too many weeds, trees outcompeting each other for water, nutrients, and light, creating unhealthy forests with concentrated fuel loads. Conservation forestry focuses on removing the more sickly, congested trees to reduce fuels and provides opportunities to return carbon back to the forest floor to increase soil and ecosystem health.