The Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve invites those who love the outdoors to join us for the unveiling of a new land monitoring program on June 2 in Marquette. The event aims to inform participants on how to help be caretakers of YDWP’s protected properties. In all, the organization owns and protects 1,340 acres in northern Marquette County. Originally, staff members at the Preserve monitored the properties but as the momentum grows to increase the amount of protected lands in our area, it is time to engage the community in aiding in this task. More…
The battle between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Marquette County Road Commission concluded on March 20th in the U.S. 6th Circuit Court over County Road 595, the proposed road leading from Eagle Mine to Humboldt Mill. For those who need a refresher, the permit for CR 595 was submitted to the MDEQ in 2012 and as part of the review process, the U.S. EPA issued objections to the project based on the Clean Water Act. Long story short, the MDEQ did not issue the permit and the process then transferred to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Our community can now count another 240 acres of land in the Yellow Dog watershed as permanently protected and forever open to the public. YDWP recently became the new owners and caretakers of the property which is along the Yellow Dog River in Champion Township. It is a magnificent parcel that we are honored to hold.
The new property is directly adjacent and upstream from our Pinnacle Falls Tract, which is a 40 acre parcel that was purchased by YDWP in 2002. The property originally was owned by the Mead Paper Company who sold it to James and Barbara Kidder in 2000. The Kidders held it for 16 years as part of a larger holding of over 800 acres. “We’re glad YDWP is the new owners and that the transfer is complete,” states Jim and Barbara Kidder. The Nature Conservancy will hold a Conservation Easement on the property, which will provide additional protection. “Working with partner organizations such as Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve is crucial in The Nature Conservancy efforts to preserve biological diversity across the whole of Earth. These groups are essential and expand our work at the local, grass roots level for they can inspire and engage local communities to connect people with nature in an effort to preserve our disappearing landscape,” says Jeff Knoop, U.P. Director of Land Protection for the Nature Conservancy. More…
Chauncey Moran, Yellow Dog RIVERKEEPER, recently conducted an aerial survey of the Salmon Trout and Yellow Dog River watersheds, scanning the landscape and waterways for mining activity and other land use issues. Both watersheds were surveyed via airplane and Moran reports that there are 7 total exploratory drilling operations that are currently active. All 7 of those are occurring directly east of Eagle Mine within a relatively short distance of the portal. This location has been called Eagle East and represents a plausible location for additional mineral deposits. No other active drilling elsewhere in the watersheds was noted during the flight. YDWP will continue to fly and conduct monitoring of this activity in order to inform concerned community members. More…
By March 31, the Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve successfully raised the funds for the purchase of 695 acres of forest in northern Marquette County. Through donations, grants, and foundation support, the group had raised $1,096,397 dollars, which is enough to move forward with the sellers of the property.
“We are amazed at the amount of support from local, statewide, and national sources that came in to help our community create this important natural asset,” says Emily Whittaker, Special Projects Manager for YDWP. “The amount raised represents 99.7% of our original goal and we now have enough to purchase the property, so the landowners and YDWP are moving forward. More…
YDWP is elated to announce the issuance of a matching challenge grant for $150,000 from a private foundation in support of the Yellow Dog River Community Forest. The foundation will match all contributions on a 1:1 basis, up to $150,000 from now to March 31, 2016. “This level of support gave our project the boost that it needed. Before the grant, we had raised $700,000 and we needed to get to $1.1 million by our deadline of March 31, 2016. Once we raise our match for this grant, that will add another $300,000 to our total. This will get us close to reaching our goal,” says Emily Whittaker, Special Projects Manager for YDWP.
The proposed Yellow Dog River Community Forest, once purchased, would become a permanently protected space encompassing 695 acres along the Yellow Dog River in northern Marquette County. The forest would be cared for and managed using a Community Forest Plan, which would be created by collecting and incorporating as much public input as possible. “It is important to remember that at the end of the day, all decisions made by the community must meet the goal of the project, which is to protect the natural resources, the property, and the community’s ability to access and enjoy those resources,” says Chauncey Moran, Chairman of YDWP. Find out more about the Community Forest Project, its Natural Resources, and the Public Participation Process.
“This challenge grant comes at a perfect time, when the groundswell needs to happen and the individual can make a big difference. It’s also great for our upcoming fundraiser on February 13th at the Ore Dock Brewing Company from 5-8pm,” says Whittaker. Details about the fundraiser can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1655854761368777/
Please consider adding to the growing financial support this project is receiving and help us meet the challenge grant. Donations are accepted via cash or check by sending it to:
Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve
P.O. Box 5
Big Bay, MI 49808
You can also donate online via Paypal by clicking below