The Northern Forest Center has helped install more than 120 pellet boilers in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and New York through “Model Neighborhood” projects. Working with local partners and leading pellet boiler manufacturers and pellet distributors, we’ve created dense clusters of homes and businesses that heat with efficient wood pellet boilers. The latest installations at the Monadnock Congregational Church in Colebrook, NH and Burke Mountain Academy in East Burke, VT will help establish wood pellet boilers as trusted, proven heating systems used by friends and neighbors, so that other home and business owners will see wood pellet boilers as a good option for their own heating needs and for their local economy.

And it’s working. In just over four years, theses 120 homes and businesses have generated nearly $4 million in total economic impact for our region’s economy and reduced net carbon dioxide in the atmosphere by 5,550 tons.

Learn more about our Modern Wood Heat Program.

2015 Annual Report cover smInvestment and Impact, the Center’s 2015 Annual Report, is packed with stories and data that show the impact of the Center’s programs. Together with our supporters and partners, we’re helping create Community Forests, catalyzing a modern wood heat economy, transforming the traditional wood products manufacturing industry, and building better jobs in tourism across the four-state region.

The report also includes a map showing where our programs touch down across the Northern Forest.
Download the 2015 Annual Report!

The Center is advancing our rural destination development strategy as the State of Maine searches for a recreation destination specialist. Recreation-based tourism is an increasingly important source of economic opportunity in rural Maine. The Center believes that historic investments in conservation and recreation infrastructure can be effectively leveraged by a targeted destination development strategy. “Clusters” are already emerging with private sector leadership.

We will work with our partners in state government and the Maine Woods Consortium to help communities prepare for and take advantage of this new resource for destination development. The new destination development specialist grew out of a legislative effort led by the Center and the Maine Woods Consortium to advance strategic clustering of recreational amenities, particularly around developed communities. Clustered development of amenities will create quality experiences for visitors in the Maine Woods as a strategy to generate local wealth and provide quality jobs in the Maine Woods.

Five tourism businesses have been awarded small mini grants to improve their offerings to visitors traveling to the Maine Woods. The Center is helping to boost visitor experiences by working with partners through the Maine Woods Consortium. Together we provide training workshops and small grants to tourism businesses in all seven Maine Woods counties. The majority of businesses have chosen to leverage the mini grants to improve their web visibility, a critical marketing move for these employers.

Learn more about our Maine Woods Tourism Training Initiative.