The 2017 Pennsylvania Land Trust Census Report highlights the success of land trusts across the state (as of 12/31/17) and includes the latest land trust rankings.
The biennial census found that, between January 2008 and December 2017, Pennsylvania land trusts:
- Expanded the lands they have conserved by 36%
- Conserved 189,000 acres of land (295 square miles), roughly the area of Union County
- On average, conserved 52 acres every day
- Increased the acreage protected by perpetual conservation easements by 46%
- Increased the acreage owned by land trusts by 66%
- Increased by 23% the land transferred to governments for parks, game lands, and other public conservation and recreational purposes
In 2016 and 2017 alone, land trusts protected 22,000 acres, which is more than 34 square miles.
The report also found that more than 123,000 Pennsylvanians contribute financially to land trusts, and that land trusts directly employ 598 people in full-time jobs.
“Day in and day out, land trusts provide a tremendous public service,” said PALTA Executive Director Andrew Loza. “Working quietly and consistently at the local level, they have created an impressive network of preserved land for the benefit of current and future generations.”