Our Blog

Redefining Conservation

March 1, 2021|By The Conservation Fund
Off-Farm Income podcast with Matt Brechwald

America’s farmers are some of the greatest stewards of the land we have. They live on the land, they’re livelihood depends upon it, and caring for and sustaining it long-term is in their best personal and economic interest. And while farmers haven’t always liked the term “conservation,” there are many creative ways that agriculture and environmentalism can work hand in hand to ensure a more sustainable farming future.

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February 22, 2021|By Kristie George
Photo courtesy U.S. Archives.

In celebration of Black History Month, we recognize the achievements of African Americans and their contributions to our nation, as well as their ongoing struggle for freedom and equality. In our third post in the series African Americans in Conservation, we invite you to learn more about some of the properties, parks, and places with ties to African American history that we have helped protect.

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February 17, 2021|By Will Allen
Photo by Joe Klementovich

With the recent Executive Order from the Biden Administration to commit to conserving at least 30% of our lands and waters by the year 2030, what does that really mean in the context of land conservation over the next decade? Will Allen, Senior Vice President of The Conservation Fund, discusses the potential implications of this 30x30 initiative and how best to think about its aspirations.

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February 12, 2021|By Ann Simonelli

The saying “there are always more fish in the sea” doesn’t ring true for one of America’s most critically at-risk species. Each year, populations of the endangered Central California Coast coho salmon remain low despite efforts to improve aquatic habitat. Less fish in the water means less fish in “dating pool” which causes more inbreeding and genetic defects that further threaten populations. Something more needed to be done to help the coho flourish in California, but what?

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February 1, 2021|By Kristie George


In celebration of Black History Month, we recognize the achievements of African Americans and their contributions to our nation, as well as their ongoing struggle for freedom and equality. There are many African Americans, both past and present, who have contributed to preserving the landscape, history, and stories of this nation. In our second post of the series African Americans in Conservation, we look to our past to inspire a better future by honoring those who have paved the way for Black conservationists.

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February 1, 2021|By Kristie George

Each February as we celebrate Black History Month, we recognize the achievements of African Americans and their contributions to our nation, as well as their ongoing struggle for freedom and equality. There are many African Americans, both past and present, who have contributed to preserving the landscape, history, and stories of this nation. This is the first post in our series African Americans in Conservation, in which we highlight young African Americans continuing the important work of changing the face of conservation and environmentalism.

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January 25, 2021|By Jamie Christensen
Photo by Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity.

I spent the first twenty years of my career helping conservation organizations use geographic information systems (GIS) to manage their land and water resources. During that time, I learned how the power of location and spatial data can transform land management and wanted to bring these insights to every landowner. So, in 2016, I co-founded a technology startup, Outdoor Access, where outdoor enthusiasts can lease land by the day for recreation activities like hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, and biking.

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January 11, 2021|By Kevin Harnish
Photo by Chad Riley.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to adapt to entirely new limitations and possibilities. This post is the fourth in a series on how our staff members are navigating unprecedented conditions and still managing to accomplish good conservation outcomes. We feature Kevin Harnish, who learned the value of conservation at an early age from his farming family and translated that into a career focused on the conservation of our working forests. Stay tuned for more of these personal stories in coming weeks and months.

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January 4, 2021|By Brad Meiklejohn
Photo by Eklutna Inc.

The Eklutna River was once a prolific salmon-producing river that provided a rich subsistence resource to the Eklutna Dena'ina people. When a major dam was installed in the river, everything changed. For five years, The Conservation Fund and our partners have worked to remove the dam and restore the salmon population. A new film details how.

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December 28, 2020|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Bill Stripling, courtesy of National Audubon Society.

This year has been filled with unprecedented challenges, but exciting conservation still happened across America. Check out some of our efforts that supported wildlife, recreation, and economies while helping to fight climate change throughout the year.

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December 24, 2020|By Val Keefer
Sydney and Tom Macy.

In 1975, an unsuspecting partnership was formed; one that would go on to protect a million acres of land across the American West. This is the story of how a friendship, marriage and passion for the outdoors would define the landscape of Colorado.

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December 21, 2020|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Sam Levitan Photography.

Today we honor Peg Kohring, one of our most accomplished, innovative and respected colleagues at The Conservation Fund. She has dedicated her career to land protection and stewardship, and has helped people, plants, animals and the planet along the way. Please join us in thanking and celebrating Peg for all that she does!

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December 14, 2020|By Olivia Percoco
Photo by Ezra Gregg.

The land we protect and the food we eat are incontrovertibly connected. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, food supply chains have been massively disrupted and, in many under-resourced communities, food has been harder to come by. We’ve worked in concert with local food hubs in North Carolina to ensure food insecure families have enough to eat without taking on any unnecessary risk.

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December 9, 2020|By Kenny Fahey
Photo by Ivan LaBianca.

Currently, half of the earth’s habitable surface is used for agriculture production. And the $5 trillion global industry is only getting bigger. Leading Harvest, a newly formed sustainable agriculture nonprofit, seeks to influence the industry for the better by improving transparency and ensuring everyone has access to healthy soil, food, and water for generations to come.

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December 7, 2020|By Larry Selzer
Photo by David Stubbs.

For me, this time of the year results in reflection; and though 2020 has looked and felt very different than any year I’ve known before, it is with gratitude that I’m writing you. With the presidential election now behind us and the transition to the new Administration underway, I’m returning my attention to some of the top priorities for The Conservation Fund. I am grateful that we have these opportunities to make a real difference on the ground and in people’s lives.

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December 2, 2020|By Karen Young
Photo by Cait Bourgault.

The people of Greater Portland, Maine, and their upstream Sebago Lake watershed neighbors enjoy exceptionally pure water. This purity is in large part due to the forests surrounding the lakes, rivers, and streams in the 234,000-acre Sebago watershed acting as a natural filter. Sebago Clean Waters, a coalition of eight conservation organizations and a regional water utility, aims to protect the forests that keep these waters clean, provide habitat for wildlife, support community well-being, and boost the local and state economy.

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November 23, 2020|By The Conservation Fund
Photo by Stacy Funderburke.

Over the last few decades, America’s local farms have been disappearing at an alarming rate. High costs, low margins, increasing consolidation, and aging farmers have put our food supply in a precarious position. In mid-November, The Conservation Fund gathered a panel of partners from its Working Farms Fund to discuss the plight of the American farm and propose solutions for a healthier, more equitable and resilient food system. Here are the major takeaways.

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November 11, 2020|By Eric Wuestewald
Steve Prince, a former U.S. Army medical evacuation (medevac) pilot.

SAVE Farm was founded to give military service members meaningful skills and job opportunities in agribusiness (farming and farming-related commercial activities) upon returning to civilian life. To date, SAVE Farm has trained more than 500 veterans, and more than 90% of these students have gone on to hold jobs related to farming. Find out how SAVE Farm provided one former Army helicopter pilot the opportunity and skills to turn his passion for helping people into a new career… goat farming!

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