An Alcoa Foundation employee works to restore an area of Muskegon County that has been damaged by insects and disease.

Working to restore an area of Muskegon County that has been damaged by insects and disease.

Project Location:
Muskegon County, Mich.

Key Activities:

  • Planting 17,995 trees across 25 acres
  • Creating educational activities for school groups, landowners and others on forest management
  • Restoring a forest damaged by disease and insects

Project Description:
Working with Muskegon Conservation District, Alcoa Foundation and American Forests are restoring an area of Muskegon County that has been damaged by insects and disease, while providing educational opportunities for the local community.

Why This Project:
Many red pine stands in Muskegon County are suffering from dual threats of an infestation of pine bark beetle and the fungal disease diplodia. Instead of simply removing the dead and dying trees, this project is designed to be an educational activity, using the trees as an educational tool for local students, landowners, businesses and more to spread the word about the importance of diverse tree stands and tree care and maintenance, as well as the threats that trees face. The second part of the project is the actual restoration of the affected area by removing the pines and replacing them with a wide variety of native species.

Why Muskegon County:
The forest being restored through this project is part of an 80-acre multi-purpose parcel in Whitehall, Mich. This land provides a variety of recreation activities for Whitehall’s 2,700 residents — not to mention those in the surrounding community. The forest can be used for activities as diverse as hiking, bird watching, camping and even mushroom hunting. Restoring this land also provides new habitat for wildlife.