Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Urban Land Trusts

Land trusts aren't just for wilderness. Here's a plea for for Urban Trusts as well.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Accreditation Board Named

The Land Trust Alliance has announced the formation of its new commission to oversee land trust accreditation. The "Land Trust Accreditation Commission: An Independent Program of the Land Trust Alliance" will consist of 13 members.
This is the next step in the LTA's promise to Congress to set accreditation standards across the country to cut down on conservation easement tax abuses.

Those named are:
Larry Kueter (CO)
Counsel, Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust
Attorney, Isaacson Rosenbaum PC
Board Member, Land Trust Alliance

David MacDonald (ME)
Director of Land Protection
Maine Coast Heritage Trust

Ann Taylor Schwing (CA)
Attorney, McDonough Holland & Allen PC
Board Member
Land Trust of Napa County

Katherine Imhoff (VA)
Chairwoman, Virginia Outdoors Foundation
Vice President for Planning and Facilities, Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Inc.

Elizabeth Crane (GA)
Program Manager
Forest Legacy, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service

David Hartwell (MN)President, Bellcomb Technologies Inc.
Board Member, Land Trust Alliance

Lucinda Hunt-Stowell (CT)
Board Member, Southbury Land Trust
Chairwoman, Flanders Nature Center and Land Trust

Jennifer Lorenz (TX)
Executive Director, Legacy Land Trust

Marc Smiley (OR)
Marc Smiley Organizational Development
Board Member, Columbia Land Trust

Peter Stein (NH)
Partner, Lyme Timber and LTC Conservation Advisory Services

Henry Tepper (NY)
New York State Director
The Nature Conservancy

Wesley Ward (MA)
Director of Land Conservation
The Trustees of Reservations

Michael Whitfield (ID)
Executive Director
Teton Regional Land Trust

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Great Bear Rising

After years of wrangling and debate, The Great Bear Rainforest is about to become one of the largest protected areas in North America. The new park is the result of years of negotiations between the Canadian government, environmental groups, logging companies and native, or First Nation tribes.
The Great Bear Rainforest is located on B.C.'s north and central coast.
Covering more than six million hectares, it is one of the world's largest intact temperate rainforests. The largely roadless area is laced with salmon rivers and has large populations of grizzly bears and white "spirit" bears, which are a rare genetic variation of black bears....

The Nature Conservancy press release has details on the plan to transform the economy of the area from extraction based to a more sustainable one.
Ecosystem-based management in the Great Bear Rainforest seeks to direct the sustainable and cautious use of resources at all scales, from broad landscapes to individual plants.
At the landscape level, a network of new and existing protected areas extending over 5 million acres will protect a core of ecologically and culturally significant areas from logging and other industrial uses. These areas provide the most secure habitat for sensitive native plants and animals, such as the white Spirit bear and many of the most productive salmon streams.
At the watershed level, such as a 20,000-acre river valley, management plans will set aside reserves where little or no resource extraction takes place. These reserves will maintain wildlife habitat and travel corridors, protect waterways and preserve specific values such as threatened species, sensitive soils and cultural, scenic and recreational areas.
At the site level, such as a 250-acre timber stand, forest harvesters will design their logging plans to retain individual trees, or groups of trees, to maintain key habitat features such as streamside forest cover, trees for nesting, or bear or wolf den sites. Logging plans will also seek to sustain ecological process by, for example, leaving large fallen trees in rivers where they form pools and side channels necessary for salmon.

As in every negotiation, the idea was to give all the parties a little something.... but the import of this deal is to protect a huge area... what TNC is calling 25% of the world's remaining temperate rainforest. A remarkable achievement.
Here's a link to a photo essay on the park.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Marty Bender

I didn't know Marty Bender, but after obituary on the home page of the Land Institute, I thought what a shame he won't be around as the country debates the future of using our natural resources. Here's an excerpt..
"Historian and Land Institute board member Donald Worster said he once asked Bender for a few facts about energy consumption on a Kansas farm.
"Back in the mail came a response that must have taken him several hours to assemble — far more information than I needed, all given in a spirit of selfless generosity that characterized Marty to the core. Besides his family, he lived for The Land Institute and its research programs."
Bender's answers were both blunt and exacting, what institute board Chairman Conn Nugent called a "tough theology":
"Will biofuels one day power an expanding American economy? No way, says Marty: You could grow fuel crops on every square inch of North America, and still fall way short of the net energy provided by the contemporary supply of fossil fuels. Solar panels? Wind machines? Hybrid vehicles? Sure, Marty would say, those are good things. Just don't expect them to let you live in the style to which you've become accustomed."

Tough theology, tough answers. A reminder that our greatest natural resource is smart, curious and honest people.

eXTReMe Tracker