The state-of-the-art energy efficient, Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station was formally opened Friday by Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter and Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. The new lab will support critical research on climate change, air quality, forest ecosystem adaptation processes and water resources. Twenty-nine percent of the $5.3 million price tag came from American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding.
"Investments in research are critical in helping us enhance our understanding and management of watersheds and forests in the decades ahead," Vilsack said. "This research facility will enable scientists to conduct research on, and find solutions for, some of the toughest challenges facing America's natural resource managers today."
Vilsack also highlighted the role the research at the new lab will play in revitalizing rural America. He pointed out that work on carbon sequestration, water, wildlife habitats, and climate change will help quantify the value of our forested lands so we build ecosystem markets and provide rural landowners with new income opportunities.