AWENDAW, S.C. — Millions of dollars are being earmarked restore forestlands in eight states in the Southeast.

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and International Paper are announcing Thursday that $7.5 million in grant money will be used to restore forests, help fish and wildlife populations and protect watersheds.

Officials are making the announcement on Thursday at a visitor center in the Francis Marion National Forest northeast of Charleston.

Most of the money will be used in the Carolinas to preserve and restore the longleaf pine ecosystems in the coastal plains of the states.