15 ways you made a difference for nature in 2018.
Thanks to the support of generous individuals like you, we’ve made remarkable strides in our second year of implementing our 25-year conservation agenda for the nature of the Columbia River region. With a keener eye for where to focus our work and a deeper understanding of how local communities relate to land, we’re having a greater impact today than ever before. As a result, we increased the amount of land we’ve conserved by 36 percent in a single year, and we’re building relationships that extend far beyond the lands we own and steward. In 2018 alone, we:
- Realized a 12-year vision to conserve 20,000 acres of forestland at the southern slopes of Mount St. Helens. We also convened federal, state, and local elected officials and agencies to highlight our proven model for collaborative forest conservation.
- Conserved the largest single property in its 28-year history—3,200 acres of forestland in Klickitat Canyon, a place rich with ecological and cultural significance. In addition, we conserved another 360 acres and a mile of river frontage just last week. This a critical step towards a long-term vision of conserving 10,000 acres along the canyon.
- Expanded the Backyard Habitat Certification Program throughout the cities of Clackamas County; exceeding our goal 5,000 homes/locations enrolled three years ahead of schedule.
- Hired an engagement program manager in Rahul Devaskar, and began to formalize our engagement program to help break down social, economic, and political barriers to community-driven conservation in the region.
- Secured funding to purchase wetland habitat at Sough Tongue Point, an effort that will support salmon habitat restoration, as well as a living laboratory for environmental sciences at Clatsop Community College.
- Kicked off the East Cascades Oak Partnership, convening more than a dozen agencies, Tribes, and non-profit partners to advance education and science around the threatened oak woodlands and prairies of the East Cascades.
- Refined our farming plan for 527 acres of crucial foraging habitat for state-endangered sandhill cranes.
- Led volunteer days to monitor bird species, plant native trees, and pull invasive weeds on conserved lands.
- Devised a habitat mapping and classification system to prioritize stewardship efforts and estimate restoration costs. In 2018, the stewardship staff successfully finished mapping and classifying the 19,000 acres of lands in the Land Trust’s care, an effort that will ensure stewardship and restoration dollars are spent in ways that leverage the most ecological benefit.
- Continued restoration efforts throughout the Columbia River estuary. We planted roughly 6,000 native trees and shrubs at the Wallacut River confluence in Washington and planted more than 14,000 trees and shrubs at our Kerry Island restoration site in Columbia County, Oregon.
- Controlled and monitored introduced skeletonweed at Mill Creek Ridge as part of an ongoing effort to protect vulnerable native plant communities, including some of the most beautiful spring wildflowers in the region.
- Served as leaders in the national land trust community. We were recognized at the Rally 2018 national conference for our commitment to fearless conservation. We also achieved reaccreditation by the Land Trust Alliance, meeting rigorous standards accountability and demonstrating a commitment to excellence in protecting and stewarding land forever.
- Made strides toward our organizational equity commitments with training for our staff, board, and Emerging Leaders Council, an origination-wide equity audit, and updates to internal policies and practices.
- Offered an assortment of immersive tours exploring restored salmon habitat, summer constellations, wildflower meadows, conservation canines, bald eagles, and tribal treaty rights.
- Shared more fearless voices—perspectives of conservationists that are redefining and reinvigorating the conservation movement across the Pacific Northwest. We interviewed inspiring leaders like Jenny Bruso and Ubaldo Hernandez through our Fieldbook magazine, highlighted the next generation of fearless voices in our Moss e-news, and shared letters to the future from people invested in building a thriving Northwest, including this amazing letter from tribal leader and conservationist Chuck Sams.
Again, thank you for protecting the nature of the Northwest now and for generations to come. We’re poised to do so much more in 2019 with your support. Please consider making a year-end gift and renewing your commitment to the unique lands, waters, and wildlife of the Northwest.
We wish you health and happiness this holiday season and in the new year.