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Video: McKenzie River Trust Rising from the Ashes

Local partnerships with community groups and nonprofits is vital to our work in state government. So when the Debris Management Task Force began to fell thousands of hazard trees last month, we were approached by a community partner we knew well: The McKenzie River Trust.

The trust said they had a novel idea for fire-ravaged logs: habitat restoration. Their plan was to implant logs in hillsides to reduce erosion, while others would be placed in the river or side streams to improve fish habitat.

We readily agreed to their vision. Not only could we honor our years-long partnership, but it was an opportunity to contribute to the recovery effort beyond the human element. The environment needs help to recover, too, and partnering with local experts like the McKenzie River Trust is a no brainer.

“This habitat restoration project has been underway for three years, we’re close to 100% engineering design for it…We’ve been seeking several thousand trees to include in it. It’s a way of mimicking and restoring some of the natural processes that occurred here over the last few hundred years”

Right now, they’re stacking the raw materials — logs — on decks near the river. Construction is slated to begin this summer. The trust hopes that, in the years to come, motorists on OR 126 will drive (slowly) through a reforested habitat, knowing it was lovingly rebuilt by their neighbors.



Wildfire waste and debris removal

The State of Oregon is working with federal, state and local partners to remove hazardous waste, and ash and debris from the 2020 Oregon wildfires safely, efficiently, and as quickly as possible. The Oregon Departments of Transportation, Environmental Quality and Emergency Management are leading the effort, with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency assistance.

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