New W&W Study Released: Financing Forest Conservation Across the Commonwealth

A new study focused on innovative methods for financing forest conservation in Massachusetts was released today at the September 2010 Wildlands and Woodlands Partnership Meeting at the Harvard Forest in Petersham, Massachusetts. Entitled Financing Forest Conservation Across the Commonwealth: Using Aggregation and Mitigation to Conserve the Forests of Massachusetts, the study was prepared by James N. Levitt, Director of the Program on Conservation Innovation at the Harvard Forest, along with Kate Isenberg and Jason Sohigian. Support for the preparation of the study was provided by the Massachusetts Environmental Trust.

The study notes the potential significance of aggregation and mitigation as strategies to finance the conservation of wildlands and woodlands across the remarkable diversity of landscapes in the state, from the lowlands of Cape Cod to the heights of Mt. Greylock.

Click here for a full copy of the report.

Following below is an excerpt from the report.

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:

FINANCING FOREST CONSERVATION ACROSS THE COMMONWEALTH

 

The conservation of the forests and watersheds of Massachusetts is key to the sustained health and well-being of present and future citizens of the Commonwealth. It is similarly key to the provision of the ecosystem services upon which they do now and will for many centuries depend. Recent studies articulate scenarios in which a cross-sectoral coalition achieves — over coming decades — the landscape-scale conservation of wildlands, woodlands and wetlands from the Berkshires to Massachusetts Bay, including those owned and managed by state and local governments, by large and small non-profit organizations, by private businesses, and by individuals and their families. Achieving the ambitious landscape-scale forest and watershed conservation goals articulated in these scenarios will require natural capital, human capital, social capital and, inevitably, financial capital.