NDSU Reclamation Conference set for Feb. 27-28

NDSU Extension
The North Dakota Reclamation Conference brings together industry, government agencies, academia and landowners to discuss effective reclamation strategies.

The 2023 North Dakota Reclamation Conference, “Restoration in Challenging Environments,” will focus on reclamation site characteristics that can make reclamation a challenge and practices to improve reclamation success. The conference will be held Feb. 27-28 at the Astoria Event Center in Dickinson, North Dakota.

This event will bring together those working on reclamation in the region to discuss effective reclamation strategies. The conference will include a general session focused on the challenges of reclamation during drought, as well as breakout sessions on soil disturbance and new approaches to reclamation. The conference will also feature a tradeshow.

The conference begins with registration at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 27. There will be a trade show mixer starting at 5 p.m. with the keynote address at 6 p.m.

Elise Gornish, University of Arizona, is the keynote speaker. Gornish is a Cooperative Extension specialist in ecological restoration at the University of Arizona. Her research and outreach program largely focuses on identifying strategies for successful restoration in arid land systems and integration of restoration approaches into weed management. Her address is titled “Making restoration better: Nothing in this talk is true but it’s exactly how things are.”

“Being more open about mistakes that we make in restoration reduces barriers to restoration success,” says Gornish. “Discussing errors is one of the best ways to learn from experience and ultimately make restoration of valuable landscapes more successful. My talk with make bare the sometimes uncomfortable and often funny mistakes that I have made when doing restoration and what I have learned as a result. My goal is to start a larger conversation about how we talk about our failures.”

The Feb. 28 program starts at 8 a.m. with a general session focused on site characterization, followed by concurrent sessions on saline and sodic conditions, and sensitive ecosystems.

“As we continue to expand our knowledge about reclamation through research and application, it is critical that we come together to share our experiences, both positive and negative,” says Miranda Meehan, North Dakota State University Extension livestock environmental stewardship specialist. “The North Dakota Reclamation Conference is a wonderful event that brings together industry, government agencies, academia and landowners to discuss their experience, enhancing the potential for remediating, reclaiming and/or restoring land and water.”

NDSU Extension, Dickinson State University, the Society for Range Management, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service, the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality and BKS Environmental are hosting the event.

Conference presenters include representatives from NDSU, the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service, the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality, Ducks Unlimited and private industry.

The registration fee for the conference is $125 if paid by Feb. 17 and $145 after that date. Student registration is free.

For registration or more information, visit or contact Meehan at 701-231-7683 or, or Toby Stroh, assistant professor of agriculture at Dickinson State, at 701-483-2185 or