The Derecho Community Forestry Grant Program has awarded funds for 66 projects across the 27 counties included in the Governor’s Derecho Disaster Proclamation. An estimated 2,484 trees will be planted in 19 counties hard-hit by the 2020 derecho.
The Iowa Legislature appropriated $250,000 of state infrastructure funds to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for the community-based tree-planting program to help recover from the derecho. All $250,000 available funds were awarded.
A USDA Forest Service study found that a large tree planted in the Midwest will provide $3,790 in environmental and other benefits over its lifetime. Trees pay us back through environmental, economic, and health benefits and so much more.
The Derecho Community Forestry Grant Program provides reimbursable grants ranging from $500 to $5,000 to be used to purchase and plant trees suitable to Iowa on publicly owned lands. Qualifying public planting lands include, but are not limited to, street right-of-ways, parks, school grounds, courthouse lawns, public buildings, fairgrounds, cemeteries, libraries and trails. Award recipients are required to provide a dollar-for-dollar cash match for purchase of trees and materials from Iowa businesses.