Our Projects 

​Since its inception in 2013 as one of only a handful of similar programs nationwide, the Sustainable Forestry and Land Retention Project has grown immensely:​

  • The project is assisting more than 180 landowners owning approximately 11,000 acres.

  • 120 Forest Management Plans have been created for approximately 6,300 acres.

  • 16 landowners have enrolled in the North Carolina Tree Farm Program.

  • Approximately 6,400 acres are enrolled into the Present Use Valuation program that provides an economic benefit through the reduction of property taxes.

Sustainable forestry and land retention practices include:

  • planting trees after harvest

  • detailed forest management plans

  • developing wills and clearing the title of heirs' property; and

  • timber sales

Some of Our Success Stories

Northampton Co. Landowner Profile: Keeping the Land in the Family

The project partnered with Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment Forestry Master's Program students to develop a forest management plan for project landowner James Roger Peterson as part of their Master's Program curriculum. A lengthy article on the collaboration ran in the  Spring 2018 issue of DukeEnvironment magazine. The Nicholas School also produced a six-minute video on the partnership.

Photograph by Raul R. Rubiera

Forest Certification


​Curtis and LaDonna Barnes own a 36-acre farm that includes 17 acres of loblolly pine trees. Their participation in the project achieved development of a forest management plan that earned their property a North Carolina Tree Farm forest certification.  


Timber Sales


Landowners William and Regenia Battle (pictured with Alton Perry) accept a participation certificate following development of a forest management plan that recommends a timber sale.


Career Opportunities

Engagement with young people like these 4-H students conducting a water test (left) is a fundamental element of the project. We organized the second annual Youth STEAM Summit for middle and high school students on July 25, 2019, to highlight opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering, Agriculture and Math. In the agricultural area, topics included land ethics, forestry and career pathways. More than 80 students participated.

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