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M.D. of Taber creates Shelterbelt Program

Posted on February 29, 2024 by Vauxhall Advance

By Heather Cameron
Vauxhall Advance
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The M.D. of Taber has a Shelterbelt Program.

“The Municipal District of Taber Agricultural Service Board created the Shelterbelt Program in 2019,” said a spokesperson for the M.D. of Taber. “The purpose of the Municipal District of Taber’s Shelterbelt Program is to assist farmers in establishing shelterbelts around yards and fields. They will be involved in the planning, application, and, if approved, the planting of trees. The costs are shared equally between the MD of Taber and the landowner, and Agricultural Services may assist with planting and setting up drip irrigation if water is available nearby.”

The shelterbelts, according to the M.D. of Taber, offer various benefits, including providing protection for yard sites and livestock, conserving soil, trapping snow, safeguarding water quality, and creating wildlife habitat.

The shelterbelt program, the M.D. of Taber says, also aligns with the M.D. of Taber’s Soil Conservation Program and the Government of Alberta’s Soil Conservation Act, aiming to preserve the agricultural land base and ensure the long-term productivity of the farming sector.

 The program, the M.D. says, is open to landowners and farmers within the Municipal District of Taber and there is no specific age restriction for participation; rather, it is targeted at individuals and families engaged in agricultural activities within the distritct.

“The program was established to address various environmental concerns and aligns with the Soil Conservation Act, aiming to prevent soil loss or deterioration, particularly from wind and water erosion,” said the M.D. of Taber. “Additionally, it serves to replace aging shelterbelts and contributes to the overall beauty of the landscape while providing habitat for wildlife.”

To participate in the Shelterbelt Program, the M.D. of Taber says, interested individuals can fill out the Shelterbelt Application Form available on the M.D. of Taber’s website at https://mdtaber.ab.ca/p/shelterbelt. The completed forms can be emailed to Jorden Holst, Manager of Agricultural Services, or delivered in person to the Administration office in Taber or the Operations & Maintenance Facility, located one kilometre west of Taber on Highway 3. For additional information on the program, the M.D. of Taber says, interested parties can call 403-223-8735.

“The Municipal District of Taber recognizes the significance of the Shelterbelt Program in addressing environmental challenges, preserving soil quality, and contributing to the long-term sustainability of the farming sector,” said the M.D. of Taber. “The program is viewed as a valuable initiative that not only helps mitigate soil erosion and conserve water quality but also enhances the aesthetic appeal of the landscape. The Shelterbelt Program is an excellent example of the Municipal District of Taber’s commitment to environmental conservation and sustainable agriculture. It not only supports farmers in addressing specific challenges but also contributes to the overall well-being and aesthetic enhancement of the community. Interested individuals are encouraged to take advantage of this program to make a positive impact on their agricultural practices and the environment.”

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