Plum Creek to fund water-quality research at Oregon State

The Plum Creek-endowed research position will focus on water quality and water quantity.

The Plum Creek-endowed research position will focus on water quality and water quantity. 

Large forest land owner Plum Creek committed $500,000 to endow a research position focused on water quality at the College of Forestry at Oregon State University.

The money will support the Plum Creek Postdoctoral Fellow in Forest Watershed Science, a position to study the impacts of forest management on water systems. OSU will begin recruiting to fill the position immediately.

“OSU is one of the premier colleges of forestry in the country, and Plum Creek has successfully partnered with Oregon State on forestry research projects for decades,” said Rick Holley, Plum Creek president and chief executive officer, in a press release. “Through this endowment, we hope to help the university continue its success in addressing critical issues tied to water quality and water quantity.”

Seattle-based Plum Creek is one of the nation’s largest private land owners with about 6.4 million acres in 19 states including 402,000 acres in Oregon.

The funded research will focus on the fact that about 80 percent of the country's fresh water originates in forests.

“Low summer flows in streams are a huge concern in the Northwest and around the world,” said Thomas Maness, the Cheryl Ramberg and Allyn C. Ford Dean of OSU’s College of Forestry. “We know that active forest management and ecological restoration has a beneficial impact on water flows."

The $500,000 commitment from Plum Creek is part of The Campaign for OSU, the university’s first comprehensive fundraising campaign. According to the OSU Foundation, donors have provided more than $887.9 million toward the campaign’s $1 billion goal.

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