RIPARIAN REVEGETATION FOR WATER QUALITY AND BIODIVERSITYCategory: 2018, Community Grant, Current, Grant, Land Use
ALUS Canada’s mission is to enable Canadians to provide direct support to a national network of farmers and ranchers delivering ecosystem services in their communities, including clean air, clean water, carbon sequestration, erosion control, flood mitigation, pollinator support and wildlife habitat.
The County of Vermilion River brought the ALUS program to Alberta in 2010. Since then, ALUS Vermilion River has worked with 41 farmers and ranchers to enhance 3027 acres of marginal agricultural land. The County of Vermilion River is primarily agricultural, and strategically integrates its ALUS program to help address issues of surface water management, wildlife habitat, and biodiversity on the agricultural landscape.
Alberta Ecotrust’s investment will be leveraged with philanthropic and municipal funding in ALUS Vermilion River to work with farmers and ranchers as on-site managers to establish 20 acres of riparian revegetation projects, which provide direct and synergistic benefits including improved water quality, flood mitigation, wildlife and pollinator habitat, improved water holding capacity of fresh water on the landscape, and improved climate resilience.
Implementing ALUS projects on marginal, inefficiently-farmed portions of agricultural land also provides social and economic benefits such as improved food sustainability and security through adaptation to climate change. Projects undertaken by ALUS Vermilion River in partnership with Alberta Ecotrust will focus on revegetation of sensitive riparian ecosystems. Project design details, including seeding and planting recommendations will be assessed and approved by a diverse Partnership Advisory Committee made up of stakeholders such as agricultural producers, technical experts, and municipal advisors. All projects are led by the farmer or rancher who identifies marginal areas of his or her land which will be managed to better produce ecosystem services as an alternative to traditional crops or livestock