FAQ

Why a Conservation Almanac?

  • To create a definitive source of conservation information
  • To inform the development of federal, state, and local policies in support of land conservation
  • To provide critical background information for elected officials, policymakers, the media, citizen activists, and researchers

How can I use this website?

By visiting the state pages and map you can determine the following:

  • How much land has been protected in my state?
  • What federal, state, and local programs have protected lands in my state?
  • How does my state compare?
  • Where are land conservation efforts most active in my state?
  • What are other places doing to achieve their conservation goals?
  • Are there any benchmarks or best practices to inform our work?
  • What policies and programs might help make progress in reaching conservation objectives?
  • How much money has been spent and acres acquired for land conservation in my state, county, and across the country?
  • With all of the new money being created for land conservation, what kind of impact are we getting?

What elements are included?

  • State land conservation program descriptions and achievements
  • Profiles of state and local programs and funding mechanisms
  • State policy framework – analysis of conservation policies in each state
  • Federal funding – analysis of federal programs used in each state
  • Federal, state, and local dollars spent annually on conservation through fee title and conservation easements
  • Data updated through 2005 include state and federal conservation activity (i.e. acres conserved and public dollars spent) data by year
  • Data updated beyond 2008 include local, state, and federal conservation activity data by parcel
  • Parcels are displayed on an interactive map to show where conservation investments have been made. Map queries show how a state‚Äôs conservation activity compares with other states, and where new policy developments are taking place.

What elements are not included?

  • Federal programs with little or no funding for land acquisition or reliable data not available
  • A complete picture of private land conservation
  • Some portions of state forests are not included because it was not possible to delineate what is permanently conserved.

How can I give feedback on the data?

We welcome feedback from Conservation Almanac data providers and data users, including requests to update information. Please email jessica.welch@tpl.org with comments and/or questions. Upon request, data providers may review their data prior to release on the Conservation Almanac website. Please contact us.

How will data be collected?

The Trust for Public Land will actively collect data from public agencies and funding programs. Data on dollars spent and acres acquired will be gathered for federal, state and local programs. Initially, only data that is digitally mapped will be collected for the map viewer. We will keep track of paper maps and non-mapped computer files for later efforts. TPL will be coordinating with the National Conservation Easement Database (NCED) project partners to gather much of the easement information. In addition, the National Conservation Easement Portal housed on the Conservation Registry will offer organizations and agencies a customized mapping tool that will allow them to draw their easement on a map (or upload a shape) and data entry fields to add accompanying information.

Although the NCED is focusing on collecting easement data, project partners are also integrating the data with other tools and efforts that are trying to develop a more complete conservation picture. The Conservation Almanac is one such effort.

How will data or information be updated over time?

Updates occur as data is collected and aggregated by Conservation Almanac staff. Please check back for updates and contact us with any questions about when data will next be updated in your state.

What if my organization does not currently have GIS capacity and/or does not have any conservation projects in a computerized/digitized form?

Depending on capacity and funding availability, Conservation Almanac staff may be available to help your organization map conserved parcels and/or edit existing spatial data. Please contact us for more information.

How is this effort related to other national protected areas mapping efforts, such as the Protected Area Database of the U.S. (PAD-US) and the National Conservation Easement Database (NCED)?

The Conservation Almanac is an important piece of the public-private partnerships that are building the Protected Areas Database of the U.S. (PAD-US) and the National Conservation Easement Database (NCED). PAD-US is an inventory of public and non-profit fee-owned lands that are dedicated to open space uses. The NCED is an inventory of conservation easements dedicated to open space uses. The Conservation Almanac is using compatible technology and coordinating with PAD-US and NCED, to submit data and to ensure that both data sets can be used in creating a complete GIS-based overview of protected areas.

The Conservation Almanac is unique in that it tracks spending associated with these lands. Since the projects are related and include some of the same players, if an agency or organization would like to share fee or easement data collected as a part of the Conservation Almanac, the Trust for Public Land can pass it on to the appropriate partner for either PAD-US or NCED.

How should I cite Conservation Almanac data used in my research?

To recognize the valuable role of the Conservation Almanac in providing information on public funding for land conservation across the country and to facilitate continued updates of this data, users of the Conservation Almanac are asked to formally acknowledge the data source. This acknowledgment should occur as a formal citation in research reports, planning documents, on-line articles, and other publications. The citation can be formatted as follows:

The Trust for Public Land, Conservation Almanac, 2019, www.conservationalmanac.org.


Don’t see what you’re looking for? Need more information?

Our team of conservation finance experts are happy to help. We can often provide custom data beyond what is represented on our website (for example, projects and spending in federal or state government districts) and are always up to date with current conservation finance news, programs, and policies from around the country.

For any questions, or if you would like to share updated data, please contact Jessica Welch at jessica.welch@tpl.org.

To obtain spatial data, please contact Mitchel Hannon at mitchel.hannon@tpl.org.

If you are using the Conservation Almanac in your research, please let us know! Contact Andrew du Moulin at andrew.dumoulin@tpl.org.