U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities
Greenville, S.C. and Durham, N.C. – January 31, 2018 – An additional 133 acres of land, including critical hardwood bottomland forest, will be protected in perpetuity thanks to a conservation easement on the property partially funded by the Enviva Forest Conservation Fund (the Fund). The Triangle Land Conservancy (TLC) was instrumental in securing the priority landscape in the Raleigh area.
Referred to as the Beaverdam Lake property, the tract has been identified as a priority area in Neuse River Corridor Plans and the Capital Area Greenway Plan. The lake, surrounding wetlands, and forest serve as a filter before the water reaches the Neuse River which functions as a drinking water resource for the town of Clayton and Johnston County. The majority of the property will be protected by a water quality buffer including the lake, stream buffers, wetlands, and bottomland forests.
“Most land owners care deeply about their connection to the land and value the benefits they provide, such as clean water and wildlife habitat,” said Carlton Owen, President and CEO of the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities, which administers the Fund. “This easement permanently protects bottomland forests and a lake within minutes of an urban setting. The generosity of the landowners, accompanied by a grant from the Enviva Forest Conservation Fund, will allow for the values inherent to a pristine ecosystem to be recognized now and for future generations.”
The tract sits less than 1,000 feet from the Neuse River in eastern Wake County North Carolina. Just minutes from downtown Raleigh, the scenic property is one of the largest remaining tracts in the rapidly urbanizing area.
The mature forested areas provide a contiguous landscape connecting parts of the Neuse River Floodplain Natural Heritage Area. Twenty acres of mature bottomland hardwoods comprise the northeastern border and tower over a rich stand of rivercane. Species identified on the property include: tulip popular, sweetgum, red maple, swamp chestnut oak, elm, ash, and pine.
Conservation easements are a tool for limiting development rights on open space while allowing the land to remain in private ownership and used for farming, forestry, recreation, and other compatible uses. Easements are held by a qualifying governmental or nonprofit entity—in this case, TLC.
“TLC is incredibly grateful for the past and current landowner’s sound conservation management of this tract which has made the protection of this rare habitat and critical conservation corridor possible” said Sandy Sweitzer, Executive Director of TLC.
The Enviva Forest Conservation Fund was launched in December of 2015 by Enviva, the world’s largest producer of wood energy pellets. Through the first two years of this planned 10-year partnership, seven projects have been funded, committing $1 million. When these projects are completed, an estimated 10,500 acres of sensitive wetland forest and other habitats will have been protected.
About Triangle Land Conservancy
Formed in 1983, Triangle Land Conservancy (TLC) strives to create a healthier and more vibrant Triangle region by safeguarding clean water, protecting natural habitats, supporting local farms and food, and connecting people with nature through land protection and stewardship, catalyzing community action, and collaboration. Over its 35-year history, TLC has conserved over 18,000 acres of land through acquisition of property and conservation easements, and own and manages seven public nature preserves.
About the Enviva Forest Conservation Fund
The Enviva Forest Conservation Fund is a $5 million, 10-year program established by Enviva Holdings, LP in December 2015 to permanently protect environmentally sensitive bottomland and wetland forests. Administered by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities, the Fund awards grants annually to nonprofit organizations and government agencies for conservation projects in North Carolina and Virginia. For more information on the Enviva Forest Conservation Fund visit envivaforestfund.org.
About the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities
The U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities (the Endowment) is a not-for-profit public charity working collaboratively with partners in the public and private sectors to advance systemic, transformative, and sustainable change for the health and vitality of the nation’s working forests and forest-reliant communities www.usendowment.org
For more information contact:
Alicia Cramer, Senior Vice President, 205-792-8650, firstname.lastname@example.org