EFM has sold 1,500 acres to the Arch Cape Water District to establish the new Arch Cape Community Forest and protect its drinking watershed.
EFM is pleased to announce the sale of 1,500 acres of coastal Oregon forestland to the Arch Cape Water District establishing the Arch Cape Community Forest and therefore enabling the permanent protection of the drinking water source for the community of Arch Cape.
This property sale is the most recent example of what success looks like for EFM. EFM’s objective is to identify high-priority acquisition targets with unique landscape attributes, transition the forests to Forest Stewardship Certified (FSC®) management, complete restoration projects to improve and protect the landscapes, and exit to permanent conservation-oriented owners. To date EFM has enabled the conservation of over 57,000 acres either via transition of ownership to tribes, state agencies, and other conservation-oriented owners or by sale of permanent easements and carbon projects. In November 2016, EFM acquired the coastal Oregon forestland, on behalf of its investors, from a privately owned forest products company. The property, known as Onion Peak, is located between Tillamook Head and Nehalem Bay and shares a boundary with the beloved Oswald West State Park. Characterized by dramatic views from rocky peaks rising abruptly from the ocean to over 3000 feet, this property supports a unique compressed ecosystem unlike anywhere else in Oregon. This area was identified by the North Coast Land Conservancy (NCLC) as an important source of drinking water for the surrounding communities.
The Arch Cape Water District partnered closely with NCLC and Sustainable Northwest to purchase the timber land, protect the watershed, and create the Community Forest. Public and private funding from the Land and Water Conservation Fund, Business Oregon, Clatsop County, the U.S. Forest Service Forest Legacy Program, and generous donations, significantly contributed to achieving the community’s goals including clean, safe and affordable drinking water for residents and visitors and a community-owned, working forest. Oregon Department of Forestry was also a major partner in providing consultation and technical support for the Forest Legacy Program funding.
“The health and resilience of the surrounding forest directly controls both the quantity and the quality of our domestic drinking water,” said Phil Chick, District Manager of the Arch Cape Domestic Water Supply District. “The acquisition of the forest permits watershed management primarily for the protection of our water while providing potential conservation, recreation and economic benefits.”
The property sale compliments the sale of an additional 3,500 acres, adjacent to the community forest, by EFM to NCLC in 2021. Read more about the additional sale here. During its ownership, EFM has managed the Onion Peak property near Arch Cape as a working forest in accordance with FSC® principles and standards. EFM’s forest management approach values the full array of forest products and services and aims to integrate the production of timber, and the enhancement of valuable ecosystem services such as clean water, wildlife habitat, and carbon storage.
“The creation of the Arch Cape Community Forest is an enormous contribution to the people of Oregon, who will benefit from the opportunity to enjoy this spectacular and unique landscape, and to the many community members who source their drinking water from this watershed” said EFM’s CEO Bettina von Hagen. “We applaud the Arch Cape Water District for their vision, perseverance and tenacity in making this vision a reality.”
EFM invests in natural climate solutions across the Americas to create long-term financial value and enduring environmental and social impact. Our award-winning investment funds enable the transition of landscapes to climate-smart forestry and to more equitable, permanent forms of land ownership. EFM stewards ~130,000 acres under FSC certified management in the western United States and has ~$215M in private capital under management and advisement. Learn more at www.efmi.com