Thompson Road Oak Woods

Project Profile

Project Location

Bull Valley, IL

Project Operator

The Land Conservancy of McHenry County

Project Type


Project Credits


Credit Availability


Project Contact

Lisa Haderlein, Executive Director

As part of the Chicago Carbon Region Program, The Land Conservancy of McHenry County (TLC) and Village of Bull Valley are preserving the 35-acre Thompson Road Oak Woods in Bull Valley, IL. The forest is dominated by 100+-year-old bur oak, white oak, and shagbark hickory trees. This project is part of a larger effort to protect the Thompson Road Conservation Area, a 275-acre property located in an important headwaters area of the Boone Creek Watershed.

Preserving Thompson Road Conservation Area will help enhance water quality for Boone Creek, a high-quality, cold-water creek considered one of Illinois’ true ecological treasures. By restoring a functioning wetland system to the property, the natural areas will better filter and manage the water that eventually flows into the creek. Thompson Road also has nearly five miles of private equestrian trails that will be preserved and incorporated in the future park as mixed-use trails. This will expand the use of these trails beyond horseback riding to include hiking, walking, snowshoeing, trail running, and other non-motorized activities.

Preserving the forest will also conserve habitat for a wide diversity of bird species, including ovenbird, eastern towhee, brown thrasher, wood thrush, and norther flicker – all species that need woods and/or shrub habitat to thrive. An accessible public viewing area will also be created along Thompson Road for wildlife viewing, including the seasonally resident sandhill cranes.

This project is part of the Chicago Region Carbon Program (CRCP) and complements other tree planting and preservation projects in the seven-metro counties included in the Chicago Region Trees Initiative. Projects in the 2022 CRCP cohort include:


Forest preservation projects not only reduce carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, but provide ecosystem services or co-benefits that can be quantified. The co-benefits from this project represent a savings (avoided costs) of $79,072 per year, and $3,162,894 over 40 years.

  • Rain interception (stormwater management) – 8,545 m3/year, $61,184 per year
  • Air quality – 0.3576 tons/year, $539 per year
  • Energy – cooling (electricity) – 67,269 kWh/year, $5,106 per year
  • Energy – heating (natural gas) – 1,257,810 kBtu/year, $12,245 per year

Social Impacts

The 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are an urgent call for action and global partnership among all countries, representing key benchmarks for creating a better world and environment for everyone. Well-designed and managed urban forests make significant contributions to the environmental sustainability, economic viability and livability of cities.

The main SDGs for this project are described below, with more detailed information in the Project Design Document.

The project protects a 35-acre forest that provides air quality benefits to adjacent residential areas. The forest is also part of a larger property that includes over 5 miles of trails available to the public for non-motorized recreation.


The project will promote community capacity for social and climate resilience by engaging local residents and volunteers in land management and educational programs about the importance of old-growth woodland preservation.


File:Sustainable Development Goal 15.png - Wikimedia Commons

This project will protect trees to reduce air pollutants and reduce stormwater runoff through effective restoration of the oak woodland habitat. Restoration will improve soil health and enhance wildlife habitat for a diversity of species, especially birds such as pileated and red-headed woodpeckers, migratory bird species and wild turkeys.

Total Credits Issued: 6,897

  • 2023: 6,897 credits issued

Total Credits Sold: 0

Total Credits Retired: 0

Total Credits Cancelled: 0

Total Credits Available for Purchase: 6,897

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