A Monthly Publication of the Nebraska Environmental Trust
Dave Heineman, Governor
Board of Trustees
In This Issue:
Executive Director Corner
Lt. Governor Rick Sheehy visits with Dale Williamson and Scott Holmes
We had a wonderful 20th anniversary celebration on Monday, July 9th. There were more than 120 people who joined us at the Ferguson House. The Lt. Governor Rick Sheehy, City of Lincoln Mayor Chris Beutler, Lottery Director Jim Haynes and our board chairman Vince Kramper all gave remarks. Everyone enjoyed refreshments and hors d’oeurves. Several of the Trust’s partners had table displays at the Capitol the entire week as part of the celebration.
The Trust is having the third quarter board meeting at historic Fort Robinson on July 19 and 20. The board will be able to see a few projects the Trust has funded in the area. Fort Robinson is surrounded by so much natural beauty and there is so much history on the grounds.
The summer is passing by quickly, so if you haven’t had a chance for a vacation, think about a three or four day vacation in Nebraska. Even a long weekend can help recharge the batteries. From the Pine Ridge to the Wildcat Hills, the Niobrara River to the Missouri River, Nebraska has a lot to offer and we are blessed with great state parks and wildlife areas.
Get out and enjoy Nebraska and let’s hope for a little rain.
Mark A. Brohman
Wild Nebraska Program
(submitted by Alicia Hardin)
The WILD-Nebraska program has been in existence since 2000, providing wildlife conservation on private lands throughout the state. The cornerstone of this program is the partnerships developed to implement a variety of management practices on grasslands, wetlands, and woodlands. 2012 represents the second year of a three year grant with the Nebraska Environmental Trust. This program has already impacted 926 acres of grassland, 404 acres of wetlands, and 135 acres of woodlands. Activities on the grasslands range from invasive tree removal and prescribed burning, to the establishment of native grasses and forbs. Wetlands have been restored by managing the water through water control structures and by filling irrigation reuse pits near (or in) the wetlands. There has also been sediment and invasive tree removal that has benefited the type of vegetation growing in the wetlands. Woodland projects have consisted of adding native shrubs to areas and removing invasive tree species from forested areas. In addition to these habitat projects, Nebraska Game and Parks staff provided technical assistance to over 2,700 landowners impacting over 82,500 acres of land across the state. Funding for this project comes from the Nebraska Environmental Trust and the Commission’s Habitat Cash fund (from the sale of Habitat stamps).
Wetlands like this one pictured in the Rainwater Basin, have been restored with the help the WILD-Nebraska NET Grant. (Photo courtesy of NEBRASKAland Magazine/NGPC)
Lower Loup NRD Irrigation Monitoring Program
(submitted by Tylr Naprstek)
Better management of Nebraska’s groundwater requires better knowledge of the groundwater resource. That is the goal of the Lower Loup Natural Resources District’s Irrigation Monitoring Program. Through the program, the LLNRD is able to receive accurate, spatially diverse data that will ensure the quality of the District’s groundwater research.
Through a grant from the Environmental Trust, the LLNRD is able to offer irrigators cost-share to place flow meters on their irrigation systems. The program provides the irrigator with concise information on the amount of water being applied to their fields. It also provides the NRD’s Board of Directors and staff with key information for developing groundwater management policy.
Through the three-year, $150,000 Environmental Trust grant, cost-share funds have been provided to 114 irrigators. This funding has been distributed in 12 of the 15 counties in the Lower Loup NRD. The cost-share funds are matched by NRD dollars to provide up to $1,500 for a flow meter at each approved site. The irrigator is responsible for installation fees, taxes and any additional costs.
In addition to the flow meter cost-share, Environmental Trust funds also were utilized to purchase pressure transducers and flow meter data-loggers for deployment at various sites. Transducers are used to determine the long-term impacts of groundwater pumping while data loggers record details of exact irrigation use from the flow meter.
- July 19-20, 2012 (Thursday/Friday) - Nebraska Environmental Trust 3rd Quarter Board Meeting, Ft. Robinson State Park.
- August 25, 2012 (Saturday) - World O' Water Omaha, Wehrspann Lake
- August 24 - September 3, 2012 - Nebraska State Fair, Grand Island
- September 4, 2012 (Tuesday) - General and Recognition Grant Application Deadline
- November 8, 2012 (Tuesday) - Nebraska Environmental Trust 4th Quarter Board Meeting, Ferguson House, Lincoln.