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Tree Overlook
Unsplash

Land restoration for carbon sequestration

As climate change stresses natural systems, and invasives become increasingly challenging to control, it's going to be an ongoing strategy adjustment to clarify what, where, and how we are going to manage natural lands.

Striving to restore these affected areas back to their Native Plant Community type helps provide high-quality habitat for native plants and wildlife, helps protect uncommon and endangered species populations in the state, and protects vital essential ecosystem services such as clean water, clean air, and carbon sequestration.

The Minnesota Land Trust conducts three common types of restoration projects across the state: prairie restoration, wetland restoration, and woody invasives removal…

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Forest
Wikimedia

Buffam Brook Community Forest

Bounded by Buffam, Boyden, and North Valley Roads, this 289-acre Town of Pelham conservation land consists of the Clifford E. Lippincott Conservation Area enhanced by five parcels that were added between 2017-2019 with funding from the U.S. Forest Service Community Forest Program, which supports local acquisition of land to create a publicly owned forest that is managed for the educational, recreational and economic benefit of the community.

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Forest
Wikimedia

Kestrel Land Trust acquires 161 acres of “core area” in Pelham, Mass.

This project is the culmination of years of work between the landowners, Kestrel Land Trust and the Town of Pelham to protect this important landscape, which supports endangered species habitat, local water quality, and climate change resilience.

The Kestrel Land Trust and the Town of Pelham Conservation Commission have acquired a 161-acre parcel of land in Pelham, Mass., that will serve as a valuable natural asset for both people and wildlife. The Buffam Brook Community Forest, which lies within a high priority terrestrial “core area” in the Connect the Connecticut landscape conservation design, will be a publicly owned forest managed for the educational, recreational, and economic benefit of the community, thanks to collaboration with several private woodland owners.

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Kids In Nature
Kestral Land Trust

New community forest promotes climate change resilience

The Town of Pelham Conservation Commission and Kestrel Land Trust recently announced the acquisition of 161-acres of woodlands from private owners to create the Buffam Brook Community Forest, west of the Quabbin Reservoir, the second of its kind in the State of Massachusetts. The Community Forest and Open Space Program is a United States Forest Service Grant that funds local acquisition of land to create a publicly owned forest that is managed for the educational, recreational and economic benefit of the community.

This project is the culmination of years of work between the landowners, Kestrel Land Trust and the Town of Pelham to protect this important landscape, which supports endangered species habitat, local water quality, and climate change resilience.

[Note: You can find additional information here]

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Forest Floor
Judy Anderson

Working Woodlands Program

Are you interested in assisting landowners with climate management goals? This is a good example of how being helpful and welcoming can inspire greater change. Make sure you follow the state and federal funding discussions in case there are resources to help land trusts initiate similar programs. Foundations, companies, and donors might be interested in supporting this effort, too.

The principle behind Working Woodlands is simple: landowners agree to manage their forests sustainably in return for conservation and management assistance with improving the value and the health of their land.

Specifically, TNC works with landowners to analyze a property’s potential as wildlife habitat and for fighting climate change. In return, participating landowners receive…

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Cowboys
MALT

Running on renewable energy

Given that climate change, if left unchecked, will destroy much of the lands and waters we are working to conserve, conservation groups are switching to renewable energy sources as a moral and mission-centered move. It also can save them money.

Talking about how, and why, your land trust has transitioned to renewable energy, is important. Modeling this shift is a leadership move that will inspire others to do the same. Posting it on the land trust’s website, or the energy provider’s website, so folks can find out more about it, is smart:

MALT helps preserve the rich agricultural heritage of Marin County by protecting its clean water, clear air, and open space. Climate change threatens Marin’s farming way of life. We operate on 100% renewable energy from MCE because reducing fossil fuel pollution will help our cause in the long run. MALT is proud to join a community of businesses and organizations in Marin who choose to reduce our carbon impact through MCE’s Deep Green Energy Program.

MALT is also raising the profile about the importance of “Carbon Farming“— demonstrating how they are walking the walk to make a difference in a variety of ways. Check out that information HERE.

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Living Soil
Soil Health Institute

Finding the right messengers

Climate change is threatening farm and ranch viability. Consider sharing this film on your Facebook page or encourage your land trust to feature it in their eNews. Because, as you know, "without farmers and ranchers, there isn't farmland."

This new documentary about regenerative agriculture highlights farmers and ranchers who are seeing the economic benefits of farming with soil in mind, and the climate benefits of doing so, as well.

ASA shared this on their Facebook page and linked it to their work

“Living Soil tells the story of farmers, scientists, and policymakers working to incorporate regenerative agricultural practices to benefit soil health for years to come. ASA has been offering soil health workshops for several years now…”

You can find the post here (just scroll down to August 31).

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Fishing
Potomac Conservancy

Making climate change relevant

Making climate change a locally-relevant issue, with locally-relevant solutions, is critical. You and your land trust can do this, too. It doesn't have to be rocket science, and you don't have to be an expert. There are many reports and stories you can amplify.

The Potomac Conservancy is providing a three-part series about climate change. Part One of their climate series starts by confronting the tough realities that their region faces in an ever-warming planet and explores how the climate crisis is uniquely impacting the Potomac River and their communities.

In Part Two, they investigate why the Potomac River region’s waters are rising faster than other waters around the world and explore the best solutions for mitigating increased flooding and storm surges.

In Part Three, they explore how the rapidly heating climate is an emerging public health crisis for the communities of the Potomac River region.

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Ev Charging
Mendocino Land Trust

EV Stations Complete

I've been reaching out to my Congressman to see if there is a way to tap federal and/or state funding for land trusts to install electric vehicle chargers at their conservation areas and local parks. That's something you might want to consider, too. Mendocino Land Trust worked on this very issue several years ago.

“Mendocino County is on the road to a cleaner and more sustainable future with the installation of 13 new electric vehicle charging stations along the coast and in Willits. Thanks to a $498,040 grant from the California Energy Commission awarded to Mendocino Land Trust in 2014, a string of new electric vehicle charging stations are up and running.”

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Solar Panels
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Utility-scale solar energy can be a tool for conservation, economic development

While many land trusts are concerned about climate change, few are messaging about solar in a manner that promotes larger-scale developments that work towards wildlife habitat, water absorption, and farm viability. Natural climate solutions will falter if we don't slow down the use of fossil fuels, quickly. Here's an example of an organization taking a proactive approach.

To put it plainly, these proposed projects will not destroy the natural environment nor negatively impact the watershed if they are approved and built in line with Linn County’s existing ordinance for solar energy projects. In fact, with a diverse mix of native grasses and wildflowers cultivated on-site, these proposed projects can significantly improve water quality, reduce soil erosion, and provide habitat for wildlife and pollinators, going a long way to restore Iowa’s landscape.

Furthermore, by using wildlife-style fencing instead of traditional chain link fencing, these sites can be a home for upland nesting birds such as ring-necked pheasants, quail, and other grassland birds like the dickcissel…

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