Chestnut Sustainable Restoration Project
A multi-decade afforestation project to plant a half-million acres to deliver restorative ecosystems and community benefits throughout the United States.
Diverse, Native Forests
Chestnut Carbon is planting on pasture and agricultural lands to restore diverse, native forests.
Quality starts with responsive project design
The foundation for the Chestnut Sustainable Restoration Project is a recognized, conceptual framework for delivering informed impact.
Study Cause of Impact
We carefully map the casual relationships between activities and outcomes to understand how the project is expected to work. We share our findings with stakeholders for transparency.
Strengthen Effect of Impact
We analyze the causal map to improve activity design, promote positive outcomes and mitigate potential negative outcomes. We incorporate stakeholder feedback to strengthen project impact and mitigate risk.
The result: activities that deliver maximum impact
Climate action is only part of the story. The project will deliver important outcomes for rural communities, and proportionately higher outcomes for biodiversity. We measure these impacts against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the planet.
Relative impact by quantity of causal relationship: community impacts (SDG 3-11, 26%), climate impacts (SDG 13, 14%) and healthy ecosystems (SDG 15, 60%).
Restoration activities for national benefits, starting in the Southeast.
The first annual cycle will plant on over 6,000 acres of unproductive land in Arkansas and Alabama. The objective is to reach 500,000 acres of restored forest by 2030, constituting more than 200 billion new trees.
Interactive map showing the boundaries of properties (color magenta) where unproductive lands are being restored to native forest.
Restoration activities that reach beyond planting trees
Tree planting contributes to project outcomes, amplified by special activities that are carefully designed for the project; what kinds of trees are planted, where trees are planted and who plants the trees makes a significant difference.
Contribution of Project Activity Groups to Total Impact
Relative activity by quantity of causal relationships with impacts: physical tree planting and maintenance are expected to deliver a minority of benefits (47% of impact) while related activities that are unique to the project are expected to deliver the majority of benefits (53% of impact).
Activities are related to controlling fire, pest and invasive species risk using sustainable plantation design, matching tree species to soil conditions and utilizing quality growing stock. The project also establishes an expert advisory committee to inform planting decisions that promote ecological resilience.
Activities are related to investing in the production of native seeds, seedlings and nursery operations that will benefit third-party buyers and local suppliers. Likewise, the project creates access to certification under the Forest Stewardship Council® for participants, building supply of certified fiber.
Activities are related to community experiences in forest establishment and management through workshops, interpretive signage and public partners. Further, sales proceeds will be used to subsidized regional technical outreach in sustainable grazing and agricultural practices.
Activities are related to enacting restrictive easements on land uses, prohibiting illegal uses and protecting water quality. Project lands are certified to the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC® C180518) for assurance of environmental protection.
Activities are related to creating access for a portion of planted lands for public enjoyment including hiking, hunting and fishing. Working with public partners, the project intends to designate trail systems, support the establishment of trail networks and help finance the long-term costs of trail maintenance.
Activities are related to the promotion of traditional, cultural and native uses through the identification and protection of high conservation values areas. The project will map and maintain these critical areas for the benefit of local people and threatened species following the requirements of the Forest Stewardship Council.
The project includes additional activities that promote the highest and best use of lands through capital investments in otherwise unproductive systems. Further, Chestnut Carbon is committed to employment activities that benefit local works and local economies.