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By working together we've found practical ways to tackle some of our community's hardest challenges—restoring forests and wetlands, mitigating wildfire, creating opportunities for youth, and growing our local economy. And we'll continue working together to take on whatever challenges may lie ahead. Learn About High Desert Partnership. 

High Desert Partnership is bringing people TOGETHER to find COMMON GROUND in addressing rural challenges and opportunities.

Partnership News

Over the last decade, reed canary grass has established a robust presence in the Harney Basin. While ag producers may disagree on whether this is good or bad, a pair of projects will examine a variety of habitats where the grass is present and what practices might be employed to manage it. A third project involves mapping the basin to see where various kinds of vegetation, including reed canary grass, are growing and how pervasively they are spreading.

The Southeast Oregon Wildfire Resiliency project’s three-pronged approach—cutting out juniper, spraying invasive annual grasses with herbicides and the re-seeding of native plants—has already yielded significant results. In areas where juniper have been removed, there’s an increase in groundwater in the form of springs and healthy riparian zones. Plus, the removal of thousands of acres of junipers is helping to create a more resilient, biodiverse and fire-resistant landscape. And that’s the point.

The Harney Basin Wetlands Collaborative (HBWC), a collaborative of the High Desert Partnership, was awarded a six year grant for more than $8 million from the Oregon Water Enhancement Board (OWEB) Focused Investment Partnership program. “This funding is imperative for HBWC. It will help with restoration efforts to meet the needs of ranchers, migratory birds and other species that rely on the Harney Basin wetlands for their survival,” said Melissa Petschauer, Harney Basin Ecological Coordinator.