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Farmers combat climate change

Farmers can be part of the climate solution — and many already are. If you or your land trust works with farmers, you might consider how to amplify the positive change agriculture can be.

American Farmland Trust is committed to making U.S. agriculture climate neutral. To do so, we are elevating the role of farmers and farmland in adapting to and mitigating the effects of climate change. From policy leadership, coalition building, and training, to research and on-the-ground demonstration projects, we are working to scale up the adoption of regenerative and soil health-promoting agricultural systems…

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Forest Friends
Three Rivers Land Trust

Community forest, close to home

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and they can help increase public access to lands, close to home. To inspire greater action, you'll need to talk about how the two are interrelated.

By conserving the Sanford Community Forest, Three Rivers Land Trust has protected one of the largest remaining natural areas within city limits from development. Land conservation like this safeguards ecological health, and ensures the availability of land for public recreation and traditional uses long into the future. The Community Forest also provides vital water quality protection in the Salmon Falls River watershed and carbon storage in its extensive forests, to slow down climate change…

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Woodstock Land Conservancy

Key initiative: Climate change

Talking about climate change in a way that connects people to what they see, and feel, on an daily basis is increasingly important. So, too, is linking to realistic solutions to address climate change.

Responding to the profound challenge of climate change is built into Woodstock Land Conservancy’s core mission: “We will adapt to climate change and learn to live sustainably. We will support local communities to do the same through outreach and education, local policy initiatives, and by operating by example.” (Vision 2020)

As a land trust, our protected lands, many of them forested, help absorb CO2 and offset greenhouse gases. Our conservation work can also reduce flooding impacts caused by the “new normal” of extreme weather events in our region…

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Screenshot

Eastern Wildway, an effort to create a wildlife corridor from the Gulf of Mexico to eastern Canada

Land trusts are working to help their communities understand how farming can be part of the climate solution.

The Allegany Wildlands is home to a spectacular diversity of plants and animals, including black bear, bobcat, rare orchids, and even some of the last surviving American Chestnut trees. As an ever-increasing number of species goes extinct in a changing climate, saving intact forests like the Allegany Wildlands becomes critical to sustaining life as we know it in Western New York.

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Mississippi Valley Conservancy

New: Climate Action Plan

Authentic action plans that address the drivers of, and solutions to, climate change are going to be critical. This plan takes that into account.

The Mississippi Valley Conservancy has developed an integrated climate action plan that is both community-oriented and action-based. They have taken a leadership position by recognizing their work will need to include nature-based solutions and renewable energy, to make a significant impact. This plan could be replicated by other land trusts.

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Many Solar Panels
Judy Anderson

Best practices in local review of community solar in rural areas

The Columbia Land Conservancy is hosting a series of webinars about community solar. Your area land trust could do this too. You can listen to the first webinar and download the slides, all of which are very informative.

Community solar projects have numerous novel features, compared to other types of development. During this session, Adriana Beltrani, an Environmental Planner with the firm Nelson, Pope, Voorhis will present what to look for in a complete site plan application package and explore ways for local planning boards to ensure that information about important resources and other local priorities are considered during the site design and review.

The session seeks to provide attendees with the tools to appropriately investigate, avoid, and mitigate potential impacts from solar projects…

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Fall Pond
Steve Neel

How the Community Forest Program works

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and help increase public access to lands, close to home.

“The Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (Community Forest Program) of the Forest Service offers a unique opportunity for communities to acquire and conserve forests that provide public access and recreational opportunities, protect vital water supplies and wildlife habitat, serve as demonstration sites for private forest landowners, and provide economic benefits from timber and non-timber products…”

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Forest
Flickr

Community Forests: A path to prosperity and connection

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and help increase public access to lands, close to home.

“Community forests are protected forestlands that contribute to healthy, flourishing communities. Importantly, they offer residents and community members a direct say in how these lands are stewarded over time…”

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Fern Forest
iStock

New special report on the benefits of community forest

Community forests can be part of the climate solution — and help increase public access to lands, close to home.

The Trust for Public Land announced the release of a special report, “Community Forests: A Path to Prosperity and Connection,” in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service and with generous support from the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities. The report, and accompanying handouts, takes a case-study approach to understanding and exploring the numerous economic benefits provided by community forests created through the U.S. Forest Service’s Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (CFP).

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Solar Install
Taos Land Trust

Producing energy while protecting the land

Some of the most innovative land trusts are small and nimble. In 2017, Taos Land Trust was already focused on climate change and modeling how to make a difference. Today, other land trusts are realizing that compatible solar is going to need to be at the core of their conservation efforts — just like invasive species management.

“Part of our work as a community land trust is to help reframe the energy debate and build community energy resiliency.

…[W]e flipped the switch on our first solar energy array and as of today more than 50% of the energy we use to run Taos Land Trust is generated by our new solar panels. The 2kW photovoltaic array sitting on our downtown Taos property was installed through a generous grant from the PPC Solar Photovoltaic Donation Program. This is a huge move for us…”

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