T.L.L. Temple Foundation, International Paper and The Conservation Fund
Announce Landmark Forest Conservation Effort to Protect more than 19,000 acres
in East Texas
Deal preserves iconic Boggy Slough forest, wildlife habitat and 18 miles of
Neches River frontage
LUFKIN, Texas, Dec. 23, 2013
LUFKIN, Texas, Dec. 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --In a landmark deal for forest
conservation, T.L.L. Temple Foundation, International Paper and The
Conservation Fund announced today the completion of an effort to protect more
than 19,000 acres of hardwood forest and wetlands in East Texas, known as
Boggy Slough. The T.L.L. Temple Foundation purchased the property in fee from
International Paper and agreed to donate a conservation easement over the
entire property to The Conservation Fund. Located west of Lufkin, Boggy Slough
contains some of the oldest and most ecologically significant hardwood forest
habitat in East Texas and spans 18 miles of river frontage along the Neches
River. The former Temple-Inland property includes 4,500 acres of riverside
forestland that has remained virtually untouched for decades.
"With this historic agreement to conserve Boggy Slough, one of the most unique
and beautiful places on the Neches River in East Texas, I want to thank The
Conservation Fund, the board of trustees of the T.L.L. Temple Foundation and
John Faraci, Chairman and CEO of International Paper Company, for their
unwavering commitment to the conservation of Boggy Slough," said Buddy Temple,
Chairman, T.L.L. Temple Foundation.
T.L.L. Temple, founder of Southern Pine Lumber Company, purchased Boggy Slough
in the early 1900s. It belonged to the Temple family until the late 1960s.
Boggy Slough operated as a wildlife and forest management research and
demonstration area under Temple Industries, Temple-Eastex and Temple-Inland,
Inc. International Paper Company built on that tradition when it acquired
Boggy Slough in 2012.
The sale of Boggy Slough to the T.L.L. Temple Foundation, and the Foundation's
commitment to donate a conservation easement across the property to The
Conservation Fund, ensures that the land will be protected and managed
sustainably as a working forest in perpetuity.
"Today is a tremendous day for East Texas conservation," said The Conservation
Fund's CEO, Larry Selzer. "There is no land more significant or more important
to the future of the Neches River, the wildlife or character of East Texas
than Boggy Slough. We are grateful to T.L.L. Temple Foundation for donating
the easement to The Conservation Fund and to International Paper for being
such an excellent steward of the land."
Often called Texas' last "wild" river, the 416-mile Neches River is truly one
of the state's least discovered natural resources. The river's slow moving
water along with its pine and bottomland hardwood forests has been a part of
eastern Texas' history and culture for thousands of years, dating back to when
Native Americans and early European settlers depended on the river and its
forests for food and shelter. Healthy forestlands across east Texas, including
Boggy Slough, are important habitat for white-tailed deer and eastern turkey
as well as numerous ducks, songbirds and fish. Its sloughs and oxbows host
two sites home to the threatened Neches River rose-mallow.
"International Paper is proud of our conservation heritage and our
partnerships with organizations like The Conservation Fund. The conservation
of Boggy Slough is the latest example of our company's commitment to
protecting and restoring forest ecosystems for future generations," said
International Paper Chairman and CEO John Faraci.
Earlier this year, International Paper committed $7.5 million over five years
to the Forestland Stewards Initiative, a partnership with the National Fish
and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF). This effort will restore native forests,
strengthen important fish and wildlife populations and protect watersheds in
eight states across the Southeastern United States, including east Texas.
NFWF will leverage the IP contribution for a total program impact of $30
Nationally, 75 million acres of forestland changed hands over the past decade,
including 4 million acres in Texas alone. The protection of Boggy Slough
builds on a conservation corridor of linked lands along the river, including
the Neches River National Wildlife Refuge, Davy Crockett and Angelina National
Forests and the Big Thicket National Preserve.
About the T.L.L. Temple Foundation
The T.L.L. Temple Foundation was established in 1962 by Georgie Temple Munz to
honor her father, T.L.L. Temple. It was her wish to create a charitable
foundation that would operate primarily to improve the quality of life for the
inhabitants of Deep East Texas. The foundation supports organizations devoted
to programs in the areas in education, public health, public affairs, human
services, arts and culture, and the environment. Since its inception, the
T.L.L. Temple Foundation has been committed to supporting environmental
initiatives devoted to the conservation of forest lands and river systems, and
the preservation of native plant and wildlife species—to protect and ensure
the perpetuity of these significant natural resources.
About International Paper
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a global leader in packaging and paper with
manufacturing operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia
and North Africa. Its businesses include industrial and consumer packaging and
uncoated papers, complemented by xpedx, the company's North American
distribution company. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., the company employs
approximately 70,000 people and is strategically located in more than 24
countries serving customers worldwide. International Paper net sales for 2012
were $28 billion. For more information about International Paper, its
products and stewardship efforts, visit internationalpaper.com.
About The Conservation Fund
At The Conservation Fund, we combine a passion for conservation with an
entrepreneurial spirit to protect your favorite places before they become just
a memory. A hallmark of our work is our deep, unwavering understanding that
for conservation solutions to last, they need to make economic sense.
Top-ranked, we have protected more than 7 million acres across America.
SOURCE International Paper
Contact: Tom Ryan, International Paper, 901-419-4333,Thomas.Ryan2@ipaper.com,
Buddy Temple, T.L.L. Temple Foundation, 936-635-0400, email@example.com,
Jack Sweeny, T.L.L. Temple Foundation, 936-675-4517, firstname.lastname@example.org, or
Jena Meredith, The Conservation Fund, 512-423-5086,
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