Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Gazing into the Future

On a night the President is laying out his plans for the country, it seems as good a time as any to look at what staffers and supporters of trusts see happening in the future. It's a little depressing. The results come from the December 2004 Survey of Land Trusts on the LTA website. The first question is, how likely is it that ALL of the land your organization protects may not continue to be conserved 100 years from now? 83% say it's highly likely or likely that they won't be able to conserve all the land. This on land that is supposed to be held in perpetuity. And the survey was taken before the Joint Committee report recommendations to chop easement deductions was released. Tax policy was mentioned as one impediment, as was pressure from land surrounding the easements being developed. The top overall threat listed to long-term protection was that trusts wouldn't be able to defend conservation easements.
This is probably one of those turning points that happens to every movement. Either conservation easements deductions have to be recognized as important and institutionalized or they will disapppear and trusts will have to learn to deal with a new reality. Check out the rest of the survey, it gives you a good sense of the challenges ahead.
Big thanks to Dave and the rest of the millers at Gristmill for the nice write-up on the easement fight. It's good to see others spreading the word. Outside of a single article in the Washington Post, the web pages of the LTA, a couple of listservs and a few humble bloggers, the silence has been deafening.
UPDATE: A few weeks ago, I pointed out the job opening for the Nevada State Director of the Nature Conservancy, and said there was no word on where current director Ame Hellman was going. Here's the word.


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker