U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King today announced that the U.S. Forest Service is awarding a grant in the amount of $231,800 to the Town of Falmouth. The funding, which is distributed through the Community Forest Program, will enable the town to purchase an additional 96-acres of forest land and add it to the existing 274-acre North Falmouth Community Forest. According to the U.S. Forest Service, the town plans to tie this property to a larger recreational trail network and provide education opportunities for students and the local community. Additionally, the town plans to thin less vigorous trees. The biomass from the project will be used in wood-fired boilers that provide heat for area schools. The harvest income will be used to further the town's open space conservation efforts.
"This federal grant will help preserve valuable forest in Falmouth and ensure recreational opportunities for generations of Mainers to come," said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement.
The Community Forest Program (CFP) protects forests that are important for people and the places they call home. Community forests provide many benefits such as places to recreate and enjoy nature; protect habitat, water quality, and other environmental benefits; and can provide economic benefits through timber resources. CFP provides financial assistance grants to local governments, tribes and qualified nonprofit organizations working to establish community forests with a focus on economic and environmental benefits, education, forest stewardship, and recreation opportunities.
This is one eight grants totaling $2.3 million to communities in eight states being announced today. Other states include New York, California, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Vermont, Montana, and Massachusetts.