National Wildlife Refuge System

Plant One Million Trees for Ouachita

Charles M Russel
The Conservation Fund's Go Zero program has planted one million trees at Upper Ouachita Refuge, LA
Credit: Scott Whitlock

The Conservation Fund announced that it is ready to achieve two spectacular milestones – its Go Zero® carbon offset program has planted one million trees at Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge, LA, and is about to plant its two millionth tree overall.

Since 2010, corporate and individual donations have helped restore nearly 3,000 acres at Upper Ouachita Refuge.  As part of its “Plant One for Ouachita” campaign, The Conservation Fund will oversee two plantings at the refuge this month, marking the two millionth tree for Go Zero® and the one millionth tree on the refuge.

The refuge was blanketed with forests until the 1960s when timber was slashed and burned. Today, Upper Ouachita Refuge is one of the largest floodplain restoration projects in the country. New forests will provide cleaner air as well as cleaner water downstream, as well as more places for the threatened Louisiana black bear to roam.

“Our partnership with The Conservation Fund’s Go Zero® program has been  ground-breaking,” said Cindy Dohner, southeast regional director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  “USFWS could not have achieved what this public-private partnership has been able to accomplish. Together, we are returning significant portions of the Lower Mississippi Valley to its native state, conserving fish and wildlife, and fighting climate change.  We are extremely grateful to The Conservation Fund and its donors for their work to achieve these milestones. Now let’s push ahead to another million-tree mark.”

“Over the next century, these trees will provide food and habitat for hundreds of thousands of waterfowl and other migratory birds and wildlife,” said refuge manager Joe McGowan.  “It’s a partnership that has greatly improved our wetlands restoration efforts here.”

Restoring a Forest Legacy at Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge: Project Design Document (pdf 4.4 MB)

Last updated: December 5, 2012