The mother tree of this sugar pine seedling withstood years of drought and bark beetle outbreaks, suggesting resiliency to such threats. Scientists hope that resiliency was passed along to the seedlings.
Credit: Kat Kerlin, UC Davis
April 8, 2021 - VALLEJO, Calif. – The Sierra National Forest and Stanislaus National Forest, two National Forests within the USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region, are proud recipients of $131,000 in partnership funding from the National Forest Foundation and Ford Motor Company, though their new Bronco Wild Fund, to replant thousands of trees across California’s Sierra Range.
These two National Forests in California are part of 17 National Forests that were selected to receive a total of $1 million nationwide for reforestation activities. The funds will be used to replant thousands of trees that have died due to wildfire, age, climate change, or other causes.
On October 20, 2020, Ford Motor Company announced the creation of the Bronco Wild Fund, which will support the responsible enjoyment and preservation of the great American outdoors. The fund’s goal is to raise up to $5 million annually to plant 1 million new trees by the end of 2021. Bronco Wild Fund will work through a series of strategic alliances with nonprofits selected for their preservation efforts of America’s outdoors and their encouragement of responsible stewardship through improved access and education.
The National Forest Foundation received $1 million from this new fund and identified 17 National Forests that had critical replanting needs. For the Sierra and Stanislaus National Forests, a decade of drought and fire put them at the top of the list.
"The seedlings provided will help restore the forest, protect the soil from erosion, and help reduce sedimentation of our streams and reservoirs,” said Dean Gould, forest supervisor for the Sierra National Forest. “This partnership will help recover wildlife habitat and the scenic beauty of the landscape we have come to appreciate. Many burned areas have seen recovery with the help of trees planted with donations from past donations through National Forest Foundation and generous partners.”
The National Forest Foundation launched the 50 Million for Our Forests campaign to raise funds by 2023 to plant 50 million trees across the National Forest System. Along with helping the foundation reach its goal faster by planting 1 million trees, Bronco Wild Fund will contribute to ongoing reforestation efforts. The National Forest Foundation anticipates investing more than $630,000 for reforestation efforts throughout California in 2021.
“Ford is proud to help restore these California National Forests impacted by severe wildfires and to help spread the message about the importance of stewarding the wild places that we love,” said Darci Gurney, Ford Brand Content & Alliances Portfolio manager. “That’s the purpose of the Bronco Wild Fund - to support public land preservation and access, and to connect people to the outdoors, responsibly.”
“Ford, through the Bronco Wild Fund, has made the largest single-year reforestation commitment in National Forest Foundation history,” said Dayle Wallien, conservation partnerships director for the National Forest Foundation. “We are grateful for this incredibly generous support to help plant trees on our National Forests in California and beyond.”
Cumulatively, between 2010 and 2020, at least 162 million trees died across 10.5 million acres of federal, state, local and private lands in California due to prolonged drought, pest infestations, and climate change. The USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region continues to look for opportunities to conduct critical tree plantings wherever possible.
The Forest Service manages 18 National Forests in the Pacific Southwest Region, which encompasses over 20 million acres across California, and assists State and Private forest landowners in California, Hawaii and the U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands. National forests supply 50 percent of the water in California and form the watershed of most major aqueducts and more than 2,400 reservoirs throughout the state. For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov/R5.
The National Forest Foundation works on behalf of the American public to inspire personal and meaningful connections to our National Forests. By directly engaging Americans and leveraging private and public funding, the NFF leads forest conservation efforts and promotes responsible recreation. Each year the NFF restores fish and wildlife habitat, facilitates common ground, plants trees in areas affected by fires, insects, and disease, and improves recreational opportunities. The NFF believes our National Forests and all they offer are an American treasure and are vital to the health of our communities. Learn more at nationalforests.org.
Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford trucks, utility vehicles, and cars – increasingly including electrified versions – and Lincoln luxury vehicles; provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company; and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification; mobility solutions, including self-driving services; and connected vehicle services. Ford employs approximately 186,000 people worldwide. For more information regarding Ford, its products and Ford Motor Credit Company, please visit corporate.ford.com.