Eight grants totaling $1 million have been announced to support forestland restoration projects and working forests in Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama.

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and International Paper announced the grants that will be matched by $1.5 million from the organizations receiving the grants to make a total impact of $2.5 million, according to a joint release.

The projects include a $100,000 award to the University of Tennessee to help restore shortleaf pine and pine-hardwood forests on 682 acres on the Cumberland Plateau.

“The Forestland Stewards Partnership has achieved tremendous success by bringing together business leaders, landowners, public agencies and conservationists to restore and protect some of the most iconic and biodiverse forests in the United States,” said Jay Jensen, director of the foundation’s southern regional office. “The grants announced today support the collective work of dozens of partners working to promote healthier forests at a landscape-scale, which will benefit wildlife and local communities.”

International Paper is 2013 made a five-year commitment of $7.5 million to restore native forests, strengthen important fish and wildlife populations and protect watersheds.

“Our entire business depends on the sustainability of forests,” said Tom Cleves, International Paper’s vice president of global citizenship. “We are thrilled to team up with organizations that share our commitment to responsible forest management.”
The projects are expected to establish more than 2,000 new acres and enhance an additional 8,000 existing acres of native forest, as well as improve 250 miles of forest and…