Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Places to start

If you are interested in learning about land trusts, two websites serve as starting points. is the home site of the big dog in conservancy, The Nature Conservancy. is the site of the umbrella group that links most local trusts, The Land Trust Alliance. Both have good stories on how they work, and there is much talk of their successes.
For an interesting perspective on some of the problems with The Nature Conservancy in particular, and some land trusts in general, read the Washington Post series on the Nature Conservancy. here. Then I think that after you do, read the Conservancy's response to the series.
I've managed many, many investigative reports, and I think the Conservancy did a good job responding positively to the problems pointed out by the series. At least from the p.r. standpoint. First, it looks as though they were guilty as charged on several points, or a congressional inquiry wouldn't have started up. But to their credit, the Nature Conservancy folks seem to have acknowledged the problems and moved quickly to fix them. It also seems to have inspired a fair amount of hiring in the area of media relations specialists, which, if the right folks are hired, could go a long way toward helping prevent further public pummelings like this one.
In future posts, I'm going to look at the hiring spree that seems to be going on at TNC and other land trusts. It's a sure sign that someone thinks these things have a future.
Finally, in the land of dead tree processing, Richard Brewer's "Conservancy" is a great intro. It's an interesting, practical read. I got my copy from Amazon. All for now, Happy Thanksgiving everyone.


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