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Outdoors Notebook: XC skis, snowshoes available for free use at Riverside Park

The equipment was made possible by donors to the Greenway and Environment Endowment Fund.

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A section of the Greenway near downtown Grand Forks is shown in this 2019 photo.
Herald file photo
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GRAND FORKS — Cross-country skis and snowshoes are now available for free use in the Riverside Park warming house during warming house hours.

The equipment was made possible by donors to the Greenway and Environment Endowment Fund held at the Community Foundation of Grand Forks, East Grand Forks & Region. The fund was established in 2002 with contributions from the Knight Foundation and Mike Maidenberg, former publisher of the Grand Forks Herald. The mission of the endowment is to fund efforts that improve, benefit or make use of publicly accessible green spaces and natural environment areas in Grand Forks and East Grand Forks, with a priority placed on the Greenway.

READ MORE OUTDOORS RECREATION COVERAGE:
While outdoors enjoying winter activities it’s important to keep your distance from wintering wildlife. Mike Anderson explains in this week’s segment of North Dakota Outdoors.

Information on facility schedules is available at www.gfparks.org or on the Park District’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/GrandForksParks .

– Herald staff report

Report highlights carbon capture benefits

North Dakota’s ranchers, farmers and other resource managers can help sequester an estimated 31% of the state’s carbon emissions by implementing biological carbon capture solutions on their lands, according to a new report from The Nature Conservancy. The solutions will also make their operations more resilient to extreme weather events.

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The findings are included in the report, titled “Biological Carbon Capture Solutions for Resilient Natural and Working Lands in North Dakota.”

Biological carbon capture solutions, including sustainable grazing, cover cropping, reduced tillage and more, can reduce North Dakota’s state greenhouse gas emissions by about 27 million metric tons per year — nearly a third of the state’s 2018 emissions, the report indicates.

“Investing in biological carbon capture will enable decarbonization through biological means, most commonly through photosynthesis,” Marissa Ahlering, science director for The Nature Conservancy in North Dakota, said in a news release. “Working lands, grasslands and wetlands can capture and store carbon in plant biomass and in the soil.”

Grasslands — one of North Dakota’s richest and most resilient ecological systems — store carbon in native plants and root systems deep in the soil, preventing it from being released into the atmosphere. The effective management of grazing lands is key to maximizing the potential of North Dakota’s grasslands. The use of sustainable grazing practices can allow grasslands to thrive and store carbon and other nutrients while also enabling ranchers to thrive and support an important industry.

The North Dakota Grazing Lands Coalition and the North Dakota Natural Resources Trust provided expert consultation and partnered with The Nature Conservancy to publish the report, which is available online at nature.org/northdakota.
– Herald staff report

N.D. fishing tourneys require 30-day notice

BISMARCK — Organizers planning fishing tournaments in North Dakota, including ice fishing contests this winter, must submit an application, along with fishing tournament regulations, to the North Dakota Game and Fish Department at least 30 days before the start of the event, the department said in a reminder.

The 30-day advance notice allows for review by agency staff to ensure the proposed tournament will not have negative biological consequences or conflicts with other proposed tournaments for the same location and/or time.

Fishing tournaments may not occur without first obtaining a valid permit from the department.

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– Herald staff report

Special allocation lottery apps due Jan. 1

BISMARCK — Nonprofit organizations eligible to receive North Dakota big game hunting licenses in 2023 must have the application submitted to the Game and Fish Department no later than Jan. 1.

North Dakota state law provides direction for the Game and Fish director to allocate big game hunting licenses to eligible organizations. Under this directive, up to two elk, moose and pronghorn licenses, and 10 white-tailed deer licenses, can be issued to organizations for fundraising.

Eligible organizations must be exempt from federal income taxation under section 501(c)(3), and must provide a copy of the letter from the Internal Revenue Service to that effect. In addition, organizations must be active and in good standing with the office of the North Dakota Secretary of State.

Successful lottery applicants must agree to donate at least 10% of the net proceeds of any license fundraiser to a conservation-related project, such as hunting access, conservation education, habitat development or shooting range management.

– Herald staff report

Third round of ECP funding opens

ST. PAUL – Minnesota’s Conservation Partners Legacy grant program is now accepting applications for the third round of Expedited Conservation Projects, the Department of Natural Resources said in a news release.

The second round of ECP grants recently closed, and nearly $1.5 million remains for the third round of ECP funding, which is open until Jan. 17.

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The ECP grant cycle funds eligible activities that restore or enhance forests, wetlands, prairies or habitat for fish, game and wildlife on public lands/waters in Minnesota. Grant requests may range from $5,000 to $50,000, with a maximum total project cost of $1 million. Nonprofit organizations and government entities are eligible to apply, and a 10% match of non-state funds is required.

Apply online by 3 p.m. Jan. 17. Funding for the CPL program comes from the Outdoor Heritage Fund , which Minnesota voters approved in November 2008 by passing the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment.

– Herald staff report

What To Read Next
Founded in 1977, F-M Walleyes Unlimited was inducted into the North Dakota Fishing Hall of Fame in 2015, putting it in the unique position of being enshrined in two states’ fishing halls of fame.
The nearly 300-mile race ended Tuesday in Grand Portage.
While larger communities may have several hunter education classes, many North Dakota towns may have only one course each year.
In the Blackduck area, new snow improved trail conditions, and snowmobilers were out on the trails despite the mercury dropping below zero over the weekend.