History of Local Wood WORKS in Maine
In 2009, The Kennebec Land Trust approached the Maine Forest Service looking for opportunities to collaborate on the conservation of Kennebec County’s forests. The Kennebec Land Trust (KLT) is focused on conserving forestland for its ecological, recreational, and community values. The Maine Forest Service (MFS) supports and advises state and private woodland owners and foresters in the sustainable management of publicly and privately owned woodlands.*
KLT and the MFS established the Kennebec Woodland Partnership (KWP) in 2009 to promote a landscape-level approach to forestland conservation in Kennebec County. KWP’s thirteen Partners collaborate on forest land conservation projects that support the region’s woods products, tourism, and recreational economies and protect water quality, wildlife habitat, scenic resources, and quality of life.
In 2013, KLT, KWP and three statewide partners - Maine Forest Service, CEI, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, and GrowSmart Maine, launched Local Wood WORKS (LWW). The shared mission of the Local Wood WORKS partners is to advance forest-based local economies and support the long-term conservation and sustainability of Maine’s woodlands. The term “local” is used in a broad sense, (e.g. Maine, New England, the Maritimes).
On November 14, 2014 the LWW partners hosted Maine’s first ever Local Wood Works conference in Augusta. One hundred and twenty people from across the Northeast gathered to engage, discuss, and learn about local wood economies. The conference featured success stories from businesses that thrive from Maine’s forests in the logging, processing, fuel, home building, and fine wood working industries; and group discussions with business leaders, policy makers, landowners, and researchers on how best to improve and grow the local wood economy.
Sustain Maine’s Wood, Create Economic Good
An opportunity for landowners, foresters, loggers, processors, wood-based businesses, State Agencies, Conservation Organizations, Artisans, Students, and Forest & Wood Products enthusiasts to connect, learn and propel Maine’s local wood economy into a sustainable future.
In October 2017, LWW hosted the first ever Designing for Maine Tour. A tour for architects, engineers, and designers to learn about forestry, see natural resources up close, and meet suppliers.
Kennebec County Woodland Days
The Kennebec Woodland Partnership has hosted several Woodland Days. These events have been opportunities for woodland owners to meet Master Loggers, observe exemplary forestry, learn and practice forest management techniques, and learn about other relevant topics.