Washington D.C., (March 23, 2016) — The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) today announced the release of the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the New England Forests and Rivers Fund. The Fund, which was launched in 2015 with seed funding from Eversource as part of its Partners for New Hampshire’s Fish and Wildlife program, is dedicated to restoring and sustaining healthy forests and rivers throughout New England. Proposals are due May 19, 2016, and the full RFP can be found here.
In just its first year, the program awarded thirteen grants through a competitive grant process, totaling over $1.2 million. The 2015 grants are opening 119 miles of stream to fish passage, restoring 13 miles of streamside forest, and creating over 140 acres of early successional forest. Many of these programs were located in New Hampshire, including work in the White Mountains, Connecticut River Valley and the Seacoast. NFWF expects to award approximately $1.9 million in 2016.
“We are excited about what this program has accomplished to date, and even more excited about its ongoing potential to restore fish and wildlife habitat that is so vital to New England communities,” said Amanda Bassow, Director of NFWF’s Northeastern Regional Office.
“We are pleased to see such great work being accomplished across the region, and especially here in New Hampshire,” said Bill Quinlan, President of Eversource’s New Hampshire Operations. “It is also important to recognize that the conservation organizations that have received these funds are focusing their work directly into on-the-ground projects that are already yielding positive results.”
The New England Forests and Rivers Fund invests in on-the-ground restoration projects and applied science in order to:
- Strengthen the health of forest systems by improving the management of public and private forestlands to create a mosaic of mixed age forests in the region.
- Provide incentives to strengthen habitat conservation on working forests through flexible technical assistance that is appropriate for the forest stage(s) being targeted;
- Improve the quality of river and stream systems through targeted riparian and stream restoration;
- Reduce barriers to fish passage and increase fish access to high quality habitat, thereby increasing overall aquatic connectivity; and
- Enhance biodiversity of forest and river systems and increase populations of species representative of system health, such as New England cottontail, American woodcock, Bay-breasted warbler, Canada warbler, Wood thrush, river herring and Eastern brook trout.
Competitive grants are reviewed by a committee of government and academic experts, and funding decisions are based on the ability of the applicant to implement strategies that achieve the program priorities and result in measurable conservation outcomes.
Major funding for the New England Forests and Rivers Fund is provided by Eversource’s Partners for New Hampshire’s Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service and Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Additional information about the Fund can be found here.
Chartered by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores the nation’s fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Working with federal, corporate and individual partners, NFWF has funded more than 4,500 organizations and committed more than $3.5 billion to conservation projects. Learn more at www.nfwf.org.