Presentation on theme: "Working Forest and Conservation Presentation to MD Governors Forestry Commission."— Presentation transcript:
Working Forest and Conservation Presentation to MD Governors Forestry Commission
Working Forests- Three Core Strategies Prevent the conversion of forestland to other uses Maintain the economic reasons to keep forests as forests-a viable industry in MD Increase public confidence in and support for sustainable forestry practices
TNCs approach Protecting forests is too big a task for any one groupwe need to work together. Success will require building a new tool kit of working forest easements, tax policy, conservation planning and incentives
Protecting Forests: Working forest easements Parsonfield, Maine:10,000 acre working forest –Property up for development into 15 parcels –TNC partnered with private investor to buy the property. Investor gave TNC option to purchase an easement to buy time for us to raise $$ –TNC, working with state legacy program obtained the funds to purchase easement with donation from town and private fund raising- $2.5 m total. –Land protected from development but will remain in working forest In four state area of NY, VT, NH, ME TNC has helped purchase 2.5 million acres of working forest easements Cost ~$300 million w/ State/Federal providing close to $100 m, private investors providing over $100 m
Protecting Forests: State and Town Forests Nash State Forest- NH 49,000 acres Errol Town Forest NH 2,000 acres Randolph Town Forest NH 6,000 acres Properties funded by bond issues, private fundraising and forest legacy. All are managed as working forests
TNC purchases $50 m in GNP debt from other lender Trades $14 m in debt for 41,000 acres of reserves Provides company with a lower interest rate note in exchange for easement on 200,000 acres of key conservation land ($36 m,7 years @4%. 4% is currently the cost of TNC capital)
Supporting the Industry: Tax Credits Federal New Market Tax Credits have been used to help private investors purchase forest land in exchange for conservation easements: –5 projects totaling $129 m in tax credits linked to conservation on 1.5 million acres so far. MD has many counties eligible NMTC used to refinance 2 paper mills (ME) and pallet manufacturer (NM) Expanding MDs state programs (current use, tradable tax deductions on gifts of easements - CO, VA)
Supporting the Industry: Ecosystem Services- Carbon markets TNC has been major proponent of developing markets for carbon linked to protecting and restoring forests: –6 projects in US and overseas- $35 m in investment by utilities to reduce greenhouse gases Opportunity to work with NE governors to create regional market for greenhouse gases
Building public support: MA State Forests Forest harvesting had ground to a halt in most state owned land due to public concern over harvesting TNC in partnership with state help broker a new strategy –State designation of ecological reserves on about 20% of state lands –Certification of other state lands by third party programs Early indications are that with proper controls, the public can accept long term forest management as a tool for public lands.
Building Public Support: Certification TNC on boards of both FSC and SFI programs The Maine example: Governors commitment to have 75% of its working forest certified lead to Time inc increasing paper purchases by 19%.