Diamond Grove Prairie, in Newton County, Missouri, is a pristine example of the native grasslands that once dominated the Springfield Plateau. Native prairie preservation and restoration is a primary goal of the natural resource trustees in southwestern Missouri. Photo credit: John Weber, FWS.
On January 11, 2012 the Department of the Interior, acting through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the State of Missouri's Department of Natural Resources announced the availability of the “Draft Springfield Plateau Regional Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment” for a 45-day public review and comment.
The Draft Plan describes proposed alternatives for restoring injured natural resources in the Springfield Plateau ecoregion which covers parts of 18 counties in southwestern Missouri. Among the restoration projects proposed in the Draft Plan are projects funded in part from natural resource damage assessment settlements, including the Eagle Picher, Carver Salvage, Newton County Wells and the ASARCO bankruptcy.
The State and federal natural resource trustees are seeking written comments by February 27, 2012.