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Strategies for Drafting Agricultural Easements


Date: December 4, 2012
Time: 2:00 pm-3:30 pm Eastern
Price: $25 per connection for members / $35 per connection for non-members. OUR APOLOGIES! THE E-NEWS FROM 11/14 INCORRECTLY STATES THAT THIS IS FREE


A 90-Minute Webinar on Creating Easements that Protect Working Land Values and Associated Conservation Values

A landowner offers to donate a conservation easement on a 200 acre parcel, including 75 acres of active farmland and 50 acres used for forestry  . . .

What factors should your land trust consider when evaluating the project? How can you create language which allows the land to be actively farmed into the future while protecting associated conservation values? How would this be different than a natural areas project? How will climate change inform the drafting?

If you want to ensure local food and farmland is viable into the future, the easement you write today should permit sound agricultural practices as agriculture and landscapes change over time. Balancing associated natural resources with agricultural production is part of the art and science of drafting "mixed use" agricultural easements.

Program Overview

Agricultural easements need to factor in economic viability, natural resource management, housing and building envelopes, water quality, climate change, subdivision, energy development and other agricultural uses such as fertilizer application and farm stands.

To learn how to handle these issues and more, we will discuss:

  • Eight key clauses you need to know before writing your next agricultural easement.
  • How to protect working lands as part of what your land trust does.
  • Key differences in protecting farmland versus natural land: from crafting easements to protect the right values, to monitoring and stewarding effectively, to handling violations.
  • What you should consider when drafting a purely agricultural easement, and how goals and easement drafting differs when protecting natural areas within agricultural landscapes.
  • Addressing biological values that are important to you, such as water protection, while taking the economic needs of the landowner into consideration.
  • Special community relations approaches you should consider.

This training will be led by Judy Anderson and Jerry Cosgrove. As principal of Community Consultants, Judy coaches organizations and teaches courses on organizational development, community-based outreach and fundraising, conservation easement drafting and stewardship, public land design, and community-based inclusive conservation.

As associate director of the Local Economies Project of the New World Foundation, Jerry works on sustainable agriculture issues in the Hudson Valley. He worked with American Farmland Trust for almost 15 years, and has consulted on agricultural, conservation, marketing and rural development issues ranging from farmland conservation to private capital development to farm estate planning.

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