strategic plan

From forty until forever:
Conservation grounded in community

For nearly forty years, the Columbia Land Conservancy has brought people together to conserve, appreciate, and enjoy land. CLC is recognized as a leader among land trusts nation-wide for land conservation, innovative programming, and meaningful community engagement. The 2024-2028 Strategic Plan calls the organization to continue that leadership.

To make an impact for the next forty years – and beyond – conservation work must be strategic, thoughtful, and grounded in the needs of the people who call this place home.

The challenges we face today are not small…
  • A changing climate
  • Habitat loss and fragmentation
  • Rising inequity
  • Lack of access to public land
  • A need to protect our water supply
  • Rising farmland prices
But we can address them together with a sound strategic plan for conservation.

Connect: Manage and promote CLC sites for demonstration, connection, education, and engagement

CLC properties are an opportunity to showcase the importance of conserving land and provide ways for individuals to connect to the land. This Strategic Vision highlights the importance of managing these sites for their natural resources and their potential to be recreational and educational resources.

What will this look like? 

  • Crafting an overall vision for public lands
  • Creating and implementing plans for each site that indicate opportunities to demonstrate best practices in land management, climate resilience, trail design, and recreation access  
  • Making these spaces more inclusive through mindful trail design, wayfinding, and communication 

Care: Promote a conservation ethic and practices to benefit our watersheds, improve our foodshed, increase climate resilience, and address environmental inequity

CLC has conserved nearly 40,000 acres of land in Columbia County and will continue to protect important landscapes. But every property does not need legal protection with a conservation easement, and relying solely on permanent protection excludes many landowners and managers from making a difference on their properties.   

 What will this look like? 

  • Creating a network of landowners interested in conservation practices like invasive species removal, carbon sequestration, woodland management, and enhancing wildlife habitat 
  • Demonstrating and interpreting best management practices at CLC properties and conservation easement lands 

Conserve: Strategic, purposeful, and judicious easements and acquisitions with attention to access, equity, and inclusion

Though CLC is the leading organization working to protect land in Columbia County, conserving our most important landscapes, foodsheds, and watersheds in the face of challenges like climate change, rising land prices, and economic instability will require a broad coalition of partners. CLC will engineer the creation of a system-wide conservation vision and strategy informed by conservation science and by diverse interests and perspectives. 

What will this look like? 

  • Updating the Columbia County Natural Resources Inventory to reflect the best available scientific data 
  • Facilitating a county-wide partnership to create a conservation vision that identifies strategic priorities for land conservation and invites participation from individuals, Conservation Advisory Committees, and other like entities, partner organizations, and communities who have historically been excluded from conservation 

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