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Cedar Bough

Riparian Grant Program

The Riparian Grant Program (RGP) provides funding for projects to restore and protect riparian habitat, the management zone along the edge of water bodies. Riparian habitat restoration projects are crucial for restoring healthy ecosystems and conserving biodiversity.   All land along streams is eligible and all landowners can qualify. 


  • Restoring & protecting critical fish habitat

  • Increasing & protecting water quality

  • Providing attractive borders

  • Stream bank stabilization

  • Increasing privacy

  • Increasing protection from noise & wind

  • Carbon sequestration

  • Creating travel corridors for a wide range of wildlife

  • Reducing erosion

  • Lowering water temperature

  • Invasive species removal

  • Creating shade

  • Active ecological stewardship

Salmon sideways underwater
WCD staff walking CREP field with landowner.


The planning for a project is done by professional staff at Whatcom Conservation District while consulting the landowner for insight into their specific needs and circumstances. 

The field work for a project, such as invasive species removal and restoration planting, is done by licensed professional contractors that work with the Conservation District. 


The program funds planting and maintaining riparian buffers of native trees and shrubs adjacent to waterbodies.  Private contractors or a conservation corps crew of young adults will be selected to do the work.  

Hands planting evergreen tree
Three people checking new riparian planting. The Twin Sisters mountains are in the background


Grass and blackberries will be mowed and controlled prior to planting and for several years after planting to reduce competition for soil moisture and nutrients.  Taking advantage of the RGP is a great way to steward your land without breaking the bank or having to spend time and labor on the project yourself. 


Owners of active farmland may also be eligible for annual incentive payments intended as compensation for land taken out of production.   The incentive payment is typically $1,000/acre/year with a 50 foot minimum buffer width.

Riparian buffer on a dairy farm.
Trees on a river bank.
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