From the Land Trust Alliance:
Land Trust Alliance and Partners Reveal
“A Land Conservation Vision for the Gulf of Mexico Region”
Report Sets Conservation Priorities Following Deepwater Horizon Disaster
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov. 12, 2014) – The Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation, a program of the Land Trust Alliance, announced today the release of “A Land Conservation Vision for the Gulf of Mexico Region.” This landmark report unites multiple partners to identify priority focus areas for land conservation and economic revival in the Gulf of Mexico.
Developed in collaboration with The Nature Conservancy and The Conservation Fund in response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster and decades of slow ecosystem decline, the 21-page report outlines voluntary conservation opportunities to inform long-term regional efforts by local landowners, public agencies and others; presents regional and state maps showing priority locations for conservation and restoration activities; and provides a resource for state and federal policymakers.
“Our shared vision to conserve the coastal region’s valuable natural areas will guide voluntary conservation actions in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas for years to come,” said Rand Wentworth, Land Trust Alliance president. “As we work together to conserve and revive a region that is losing up to $22.7 billion in tourism revenue and $8.7 billion in commercial fishing activity from the Deepwater Horizon spill, we will collaborate with private landowners and local stakeholders to protect habitats, natural resources and economic opportunities.”
Following the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the Alliance in 2010 organized a partnership uniting all major private, nonprofit organizations working to protect and restore lands across the five-state coastal region. The Alliance led development of this Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation, a coalition of 30 local, regional, state and national land conservation groups. The Conservation Fund provided strategic conservation planning, training and guidance to member organizations, and The Nature Conservancy compiled the key maps featured in the report.
Bob Stokes, chairman of the Partnership’s executive committee and president of the Galveston Bay Foundation in Texas, said the region’s many land conservation groups are now collaborating in unprecedented ways.
“Land trusts across the Gulf Coast rarely had a chance to work closely together prior to the Deepwater Horizon spill,” he said. “The Partnership serves as a powerful, unified voice about the need for land conservation in light of the damage from the spill and historic damage to the Gulf’s natural resources. We’ve come together with our Conservation Vision and we will continue to work together to ensure it is implemented.”
“A Land Conservation Vision for the Gulf of Mexico Region” is the first in a series of web- and print-based resources to be developed by the Partnership. Forthcoming resources will provide more detailed accounts of the restoration opportunities and challenges throughout the region and within each state. Visit www.gulfpartnership.org for more information and resources.
About the Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation
A program of the Land Trust Alliance, the Partnership for Gulf Coast Land Conservation is a coalition of local, regional, state and national land conservation organizations devoted to advancing land and water conservation in the Gulf of Mexico region. Our core mission is to work together across the five Gulf of Mexico states to increase the pace, quality and permanence of voluntary land and water conservation in the coastal region. More information about the Partnership is available at www.gulfpartnership.org.
About the Land Trust Alliance
Founded in 1982, the Land Trust Alliance is a national land conservation organization that works to save the places people need and love by strengthening land conservation across America. The Alliance represents 1,200 member land trusts supported by more than 100,000 volunteers and 5 million members nationwide. The Alliance is based in Washington, D.C. and operates several regional offices. More information about the Alliance is available at www.landtrustalliance.org.
About The Nature Conservancy
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org/gulf.
About The Conservation Fund
At The Conservation Fund, we combine a passion for conservation with an entrepreneurial spirit to protect your favorite places before they become just a memory. A hallmark of our work is our deep, unwavering understanding that for conservation solutions to last, they need to make economic sense. Top-ranked, we have protected more than 7 million acres across America. www.conservationfund.org