Friends of Lower Blue River announce climate resiliency initiative |

Friends of Lower Blue River announce climate resiliency initiative

Sky-Hi News staff report

Four Lower Blue River ranches will be studied in a local climate action initiative that’s being spearheaded by the Friends of the Lower Blue River group.

According to a news release, the group is launching the first phase of its Safe Soils, Climate Resiliency Initiative, which will assess the health of the soil, establish baseline data and recommend improvements to increase the land’s ability to capture carbon in the environment.

“The Climate Resiliency Initiative represents a home run for FOLBR in advancing several programs to enhance the quality of the environment in the Lower Blue Valley,” FOLBR President George Resseguie said in a statement.

Initial funding for the project was provided by the Middle Park Conservation District, Summit County, Breckenridge Grand Vacation Gives and the Hagemeyer Family Foundation. Summit County provided $10,000 this year for Middle Park Conservation District to fund a climate action projects.

The four participating ranches — Pass Creek Ranch, Blue Tree Ranch, Otter Creek Ranch and Blue Valley Ranch — have diverse land profiles and offer a great opportunity to gather soil data.

Ultimately, Friends of the Lower Blue River hopes to expand the focus and share what they learn to benefit all land stakeholders in the Lower Blue River Valley.

“For the first time, we are hiring experienced consultants to take on a key role in this project,” Resseguie said, adding that they look forward to begining on-site work in 2022.

According to FOLBR Executive Director Jonathan Knopf, the effort will bring together several partner organizations to serve as advisors in this Climate Resiliency Initiative.

“Bottom line, FOLBR is not just talking the talk, we’re walking the walk and doing something about this existential threat to our way of life,” he said. “This is only the beginning of a long-term project for FOLBR, aimed at improving our valley’s ability to capture greenhouse gases in the atmosphere by improving soil health, the health of the riparian zones along the Blue River and the forested lands both private and public. The healthier the soil, the more carbon can be captured.”

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