Environmental & Natural Resources

Picture of man in the woods

Cooperative Extension
Agiculture and Natural Resources

Community Health

Family and Consumer Sciences
4-h Youth Development Community Resources Development Small-Scale Farm Grant Program  

Environmental and Natural Resources

Kentucky State University is committed to informing Kentuckians about the importance of protecting our valuable natural resources for economic, social, health, recreational and aesthetic purposes.

The health and well-being of Kentucky communities and sustained agricultural systems depend on the protection and conservation of natural resources now and for the future. Our citizens’ health and our economy is tied to the health of our forests, waterways, air and soil.

Environment and natural resources in Kentucky by the numbers:

  • $13 billion (estimated) each year is spent on wildlife-related recreation in Kentucky
  • $13 billion generated by the state’s forests each year for the Kentucky economy
  • 12 million acres of forestland in Kentucky
  • 49% of the state is covered in forestland
  • 99% of those 12 million acres is considered to be available for timber production
  • 91,000 miles of streams in Kentucky
  • 225,000 acres of ponds, lakes and reservoirs in Kentucky
  • 67% of Kentucky rivers and streams were deemed impaired by the Kentucky Division of Water in 2012
  • 20 frog, 25 salamander, and 13 turtle species, plus diverse fish and mussel populations, require healthy water for breeding

Environmental issues are spread throughout the state. Forest fragmentation and loss, non-native invasive plants and pests, and unlawful activity are issues related to Kentucky forests. Impaired water in Kentucky as assessed by the Kentucky Division of Water in 2012 was due to sediment from erosion and flooding and runoff from fertilizers and pesticides.

Our role at KSU is to design innovative programming that bridges the divide between scientific data and the general public’s understanding of the importance of preserving Kentucky’s natural resources so Kentuckians can take action to ameliorate the environmental issues throughout the state.