The Regional Forest Protection Program (RFPP), run by Conservancy staff with the assistance of a committee of seasoned experts, allows the Conservancy to look beyond individual parcels and protect entire landscapes. These landscape-level efforts enhance ecological resilience, preserve migratory corridors for the flow of plant and animal species, protect air and water quality and blunt the effects of climate change.

By placing a higher emphasis on connectivity, GTRLC’s land protection staff can protect properties that on their own may not have very unique or significant features, but that are essential parts of significant, larger landscapes.

The program is a logical extension of the realization that landscape-level conservation provides greater benefits than those gained from protection of isolated, disconnected parcels. And because overall landscapes vary in quality from parcel to parcel, it’s important to make sure land that’s critical for connectivity doesn’t fall through the protection cracks.

RFPP goals will be accomplished primarily through conservation easements, which, as always, are voluntary for landowners. That’s where the “managed” aspect of the program comes in, as many of these parcels are expected to be sustainably managed as working forests. This preserves forest health while making the prospect of an easement financially viable and attractive for landowners.

Interested in protecting your forest land or learning more about our Regional Forest Protection Program? Email Senior Conservation Project Manager, Vic Lane at or call him at (231) 929-7911.

More information about conservation easements and other land protection tools can also be found on our landowner information page.