Kansas Public Employees Retirement System has approved a $75m (€70.2m) commitment to the RMS Evergreen US Forestland Fund.

The commitment allows the pension fund to be a limited partner in one of few open-ended funds that invest in US timberland.

The fund holds a partial interest in a 2.1 million acre timberland portfolio worth $3.9bn in the southern region of the US.

Evergreen US Fund, sponsored by privately held timberland manager Resource Management Service, did not comment.

The targeted long-term net returns for the fund are in the high single digits.

The fund will accumulate most of its annual revenue and total return from active timber sales to local and regional sawmills and pulp mills.

This is expected to be driven by a recovering US housing market and growing demand for pulpwood used in packaging and wood-pellet production.

The fund plans to continue to acquire more timberland assets beyond its existing portfolio.

Assets will be in the southern region of the US and the portfolio will be diversified by age-class, species and regional submarkets.

The commitment by Kansas PERS is the second to Evergreen’s fund by a major US investor.

Last year, the New Mexico State Investment Council approved a $125m allocation to the fund.