From a news release issued by Alliant Energy:
Grasslands Will Be Preserved and Restored to Benefit Farmers and Provide Renewable Energy
MADISON, Wis. — A new initiative announced today will demonstrate how diverse native prairies in southwest Wisconsin have the potential to provide income to farmers, better habitat for wildlife and homegrown and renewable energy to businesses.
The Alliant Energy Foundation is providing $100,000 per year over the next three years to The Nature Conservancy to establish demonstration projects that harvest biomass from native and restored prairies in the Military Ridge Prairie Heritage Area in southwest Wisconsin.
“This is the first project of its kind in the region and one that will explore how we can create new economic opportunities for area farmers,” said Barbara Swan, Alliant Energy Foundation President. “It’s a great way to preserve some of our best grasslands for future generations.”
Mary Jean Huston, director of The Nature Conservancy in Wisconsin, said new strategies are needed to protect the state’s grasslands, which are at risk even though they provide excellent wildlife habitat and help preserve water quality.
Military Ridge is one of the state’s best opportunities for grassland conservation because it includes more than 60 native prairie remnants and pasture land within a 50,000-acre grassland landscape located in Dane and Iowa counties.
“The best way to keep Military Ridge’s lands and waters in good natural condition is to demonstrate good conservation practices,” Huston said. “This generous gift from the Alliant Energy Foundation will help us protect this incredible landscape for nature and people alike.”