Land trusts protect open space of all kinds- wetlands, wildlife habitat, shorelines, forests, scenic views, farms, watersheds, historic and prehistoric sites, and recreational areas- land of every size and type that has cultural or ecological value.
The first land trust was founded more than 100 years ago in New England, the region that still boasts more than a third of the nation's land trusts. The first American conservation easement, which permanently limits development of land, was written in the late 1880's to protect parkways in and around Boston. There are currently more than 1200 land trusts in America, 63% more than in 1988. Land trusts operate in every state as well as Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
A Vernal Pool in Early Spring. Photo by J. Ohop
Absolutely. Local and regional land trusts have protected approximately 4.7 million acres of land with many forms of conservation value.