GNA Spotlight - May 2022

May 25, 2022

Good Neighbor Authority Spotlight

Authored by Andrew Frederick, Resource Management Bureau Chief, New Mexico State Forestry Division

The Box Canyon Fuels Reduction Good Neighbor Authority Project between the Claunch-Pinto Soil and Water Conservation District and the USDA Forest Service with state funding enhances the function of one of the last intact watersheds (Upper Arroyo de Manzano) in the Manzano Mountains of New Mexico. 

The Box Canyon Project is a 300-acre USDA Forest Service land project in the Upper Arroyo de Manzano watershed. The project completed restoration treatments designed to reduce the threat of high-intensity wildfire by reducing the fuels on the remaining unburned forested watersheds in the central Manzanos. 

This project was prioritized in the Torrance County and Claunch-Pinto Soil and Water Conservation District (district) 2016 Community Wildfire Protection Plans and the 2017 NM Communities at Risk. This project allowed the Mountainair Ranger District to improve watershed health, wildlife habitat, and recreational opportunities, as well as provide fuelwood and small-diameter raw wood material to the local community. This project benefited the Manzano Mutual Domestic Water Association and the Manzano Ditch Association, along with continued development of a landscape scale fuel break to help protect the villages of Manzano and Punta de Agua, NM.  

The project was funded through New Mexico State Forestry to the district. The district partnered with New Mexico Forest Industry Association, which was able to bid the thinning work out to several thinning contractors to help maintain a workforce, especially through these dire economic times.  

For more information about this project, contact Dierdre L. Tarr, District Manager. 

Photo Credit: Vernon Kohler