The Landscape Conservation Bulletin
A bi-monthly service of the Network for 
Landscape Conservation
January 2021
Dear Network Friends,

As we enter 2021, the opportunity for new approaches in conservation is upon us. Given the public health and political storms of the past year, there has never been a better time to take a clear-eyed assessment of how the conservation movement will need to evolve to succeed into the future. It is critically important that the principles of inclusion and equity, which have not often been central to conservation work, are integrated into conservation at all scales. Through the Network for Landscape Conservation’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Working Group, we hope to be part of the change we wish to see in the world, starting with the “Weaving the Strands Together” report being released this month.

The Network partnered with the Salazar Center for North American Conservation to produce this important work. The stories shared in the report capture just a few examples of the profound work under way in all corners of the country—and we know that there are many other equally powerful stories. We hope you’ll be in touch with us to share your own stories as we all learn and explore together what it means to shape an authentic, transformative, and enduring landscape conservation movement that centers justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion.

All the very best,

In This Issue
Weaving the Strands Together
Insights on Collaboration
Tracking Administration Priorities
Additional Landscape Conservation News
Upcoming Events
Landscape Conservation Job Board
Webinars & Additional Resources
Beth Conover
Executive Director, Salazar Center for North American Conservation
Rebecca Stanfield McCown
Director, National Park Service
Stewardship Institute
Beth and Rebecca are co-chairs of the Network's DEI Working Group.
Cover photo: Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah. Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash.
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Featured News
Weaving the Strands Together: report shares stories demonstrating how principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion strengthen the collaborative landscape conservation movement
This week the Salazar Center for North American Conservation and the Network for Landscape Conservation released a report that explores how principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion strengthen landscape conservation efforts across the United States. "Weaving the Strands Together: Case Studies in Inclusive and Equitable Landscape Conservation" shares stories that emerge from the city of Baltimore, the desert landscape of Bears Ears Natural Monument, the Klamath River watershed in the Pacific Northwest, and Pembroke Township in northeastern Illinois. These stories, drawn from interviews with leaders and stakeholders within each of the four landscape conservation initiatives, show inspiring conservation successes sparked by leadership from historically marginalized communities—and demonstrate how inclusive collaborative approaches not only advance conservation goals but also foster mutual respect, community autonomy, and cultural recognition. We’re incredibly grateful to these landscape conservation leaders for sharing their stories with us and helping us to see the common themes and lessons learned that emerge—insights that are sure to guide our necessary and collective efforts to build equitable and respectful relationships with communities that have long been ignored (or worse) by the conservation movement. 

This report will also serve as a foundation for the next event in the Network's Policy Forum Series on the Future of Landscape Conservation--stay tuned for more information.
Featured News
Exploring further insights around the collaborative elements of success for landscape conservation initiatives
A series of recent publications and articles have focused attention on the collaborative process central to landscape conservation. For instance, Partnerscapes recently released a report, Perspectives on Collaborative Conservation: Evaluating Partnership Challenges, Successes, and Opportunities in the West, that synthesizes insights from survey responses of nearly 100 conservation collaboratives. A key theme emerging from the stories and experiences of these collaboratives is the central importance of foundational relationships—and how these relationships and the trust the builds therein translate into on-the-ground results and unexpected positive impacts beyond the original focus or scope of an initiative.
In launching the Perspectives on Collaborative Conservation report, Partnerscapes convened a webinar to explore the themes and insights that emerge from the report.
Elsewhere, an article in Office of Citizen, a publication of Philanthropy for Active Civic Engagement, builds upon this theme, reflecting upon the power and importance of understanding our societal structures as complex adaptive systems when wrestling with seemingly intractable challenges. The authors explore how relationships are primary drivers of complex adaptive systems and argue that investing in relationships is essential to effecting systems change: such investments are a necessity not a luxury. Though written through the lens of the pandemic, racism, and political polarization, the insights are broadly relevant across systemic challenges—including the challenges that collaborative landscape conservation practitioners confront. Finally, an article shared by the Environmental Dispute Resolution program at the University of Utah explores the “secret sauce” of successful collaboration. At its core collaboration is a human endeavor and plays out through relationships—and the article explores elements of collaborative leadership and approaches for fostering a collaborative “mindset” within a team. As we continue to grapple with the systems challenges that we are facing as landscape conservation practitioners, these articles together offer insights into how we can approach our work.
Featured News
Tracking early signals from the new Administration on priorities that intersect with landscape conservation
The Biden-Harris Administration has moved quickly on a series of executive actions in its first weeks as a means of framing priorities and setting a course for its work related to climate change, which includes strong attention to landscape conservation, collaborative conservation, environmental justice, and evidence-based decisions. We've been tracking these early signals of direction around the conservation and stewardship of our lands and waters, the importance of working across boundaries, and the need to engage with partners, including sovereign Tribes, farmers and ranchers, and individuals who care about these issues.

A White House Fact Sheet summarizes its early suite of executive actions on climate change. The core of these actions is an Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Aboard. Key points particularly relevant to landscape conservation include setting the goal of conserving at least 30 percent of our lands and oceans by 2030, the establishment of a Civilian Climate Corps, and the creation of a National Climate Taskforce to ensure a whole-of-government approach to the climate crisis. The Executive Order also instructs all federal agencies to embrace environmental justice as a core part of their mission. Further actions from the administration in this vein include a Presidential Memo on Restoring Trust in Government Through Scientific Integrity and Evidence-Based Policymaking, which directs agencies to make evidence-based decisions guided by the best available science and data, and an Executive Order on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology which re-establishes a Presidential Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Finally, a Presidential Memo on Tribal Consultation and Strengthening Nation-to-Nation Relations was released that directs all federal agencies to engage in regular and meaningful consultation with Tribal officials in the development of federal policies that have Tribal implications. 

This is not intended to be a comprehensive list but rather an overview--as a network intent on serving the broader landscape conservation community by connecting and sharing information, we are continuing to track the Administration's priorities and directions. We know many of you are too—see several of the additional news items below—and, regardless of specifics, what is clear is that the approaches of collaborative landscape conservation will be incredibly relevant to the priorities that the Administration is setting.
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Additional Landscape Conservation News
Commentary in the Living Landscape Observer explores major trends that have emerged in recent years that should inform the new Administration’s approach to landscape conservation.

Inside Climate News article highlights the Biden Administration’s 30 by 30 conservation plan—but also explores environmental justice concerns that such efforts could exacerbate inequalities in access to nature. 

The Center for American Progress has released a new issue brief calling on the Biden Administration to prioritize Indigenous leadership within its conservation plan.

Public lands, a foundation of many landscape conservation initiatives, have experienced drastic changes in environmental policy over the last four years—a Yale E360 article explores the legacy the new Administration will confront in working towards its public lands agenda.

High Country News article highlights previous Administration’s damaging legacy on Tribal sovereignty and the protection of the land and wildlife of tribes. 

The Western Landowners Alliance suggests a 1000-day road map for the Biden administration to redefining conservation to revitalize rural American while addressing the biodiversity and climate crises.

The 2021 Sentinel Landscapes designation cycle has opened and is accepting applications for partnerships working to strengthen military readiness, bolster agricultural economies, and enhance climate change resilience

Commentary piece in Mongabay explores how the extraordinary circumstances of the pandemic have created new, unique opportunities for systemic change toward transforming conservation.

The Conservation Finance Network explores two case studies on using the Department of Defense’s REPI Program funding to secure critical conservation acquisitions in Georgia. 

Mongabay article highlights the reintroduction of bison on South Dakota’s Rosebud Indian Reservation, a key step in efforts to return America’s largest land animal back to the prairie landscape and a critical advance for community development, cultural connection, and self-determination of a Tribal nation.  

Article in Stateline, an initiative of the Pew Charitable Trusts, highlights the growing recognition of Tribal sovereignty and trends towards honoring Native treaty rights—and what this could mean for landscapes across the country. 

NPR article spotlights the importance of “Natural Highways” for sustaining wildlife populations in the face of climate change impacts. 

In collaboration with partners and cooperating agencies, ARC Solutions has released a Communications Toolkit on Wildlife Crossings.
Explore Success Stories from the Western US as well as Frequently Asked Questions

Senator Udall pens essay for Patagonia highlighting the hope of wildlife corridors—and efforts to pass the Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act.

A summary report from Salazar Center and partners synthesizes observations and recommendations that emerged from Conservation Conversations, a series of conversations exploring pressing 21st Century conservation issues. 

Congress reauthorizes and strengthens the National Estuary Program, a longstanding landscape-scale program that brings together rigorous science with local involvement and collaborative governance to produce measurable improvements in estuaries on both coasts and the Great Lakes. 

Green 2.0’s fourth annual NGO and Foundation Transparency Report Card shows incremental progress—but the largest and most influential non-profit environmental organizations and foundations remaining overwhelmingly white.

Highstead Foundation highlights two new case studies on innovative financing approaches to forest conservation—and a new Issues in Ecology report from the Ecological Society of America focuses on innovative funding for conservation. 

Newly released Land Policy report from the National Young Farmers Coalition explores the history of immense inequalities in land ownership and pathways forward for creating a more equitable farming future. 

Leveraging technology for landscape conservation: article in Anthropocene Magazine highlights researchers’ efforts to develop reliable, broad-scale monitoring of habitat destruction using satellite imagery—and a new agreement between the U.S. Department of Agriculture and NASA aims to leverage technology to improve agricultural and earth science research at scale.. 

Arctic Indigenous Stewardship Network builds resiliency within landscapes—and within communities, as evidenced by its response in helping local communities navigate the COVID pandemic. 
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Upcoming Conferences & Events

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A virtual training course

February 22-26, 2021 — The Nature of Cities Festival
A virtual festival

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Landscape Conservation Job Board

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Program Director, The Salazar Center for North American Conservation

Senior Vice President of Conservation, The Adirondack Council

Western Program Director, The Wildlands Network

Senior Wildlife Biologist, The Wildlands Network

Conservation Connect Fellowship Program, The National Forest Foundation

Wilburforce Leaders in Conservation Science

This section of the Landscape Conservation Bulletin is intended to be a space to share job postings that will be specifically relevant to landscape conservation practitioners. We welcome submissions: if your organization would like to widely distribute a posting please be in touch.
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Webinars & Additional Resources

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The 2021 National Land Trust Census is currently underway; the Land Trust Alliance conducts this comprehensive survey of private land conservation in America every 5 years. Participate in the survey here.

The recording of the Network's December Policy Forum, The Future of Landscape Conservation: Cultivating Landowner Engagement, can be found here.

A webinar presented by The Narwhal
February 2, 2021

A film screening as part of the Yellowstone to Yukon Film Fest
February 3, 2021

An NPS Connected Conservation webinar
February 3, 2021

An Ideas to Action webinar, presented by the Rural Voices of Conservation Coalition 
February 11, 2021

An NPS Connected Conservation webinar
February 18, 2021

An NPS Connected Conservation webinar
March 3, 2021

An NPS Connected Conservation webinar
March 25, 2021

An NPS Connected Conservation webinar
March 25, 2021

A conversation with Tony Hiss, author of the forthcoming Rescuing the Planet book, presented by the Network for Landscape Conservation
April 1. 2021

A Network for Landscape Conservation Landscape Perspectives webinar
April 7, 2021

Following cancellation of the 2020 Conservation Finance Boot Camp, the Conservation Finance Network compiled a 4-part video short course, which is available via the above link.

A weekly podcast that explores the challenges presented by adapting to climate change and the approaches the field's best minds believe are already working.

Recordings of past webinars of the Connected Conservation webinar series are available on the National Park Service Connected Conservation website.

The Network for Landscape Conservation is the community of practice for practitioners advancing collaborative, cross-boundary conservation as an essential approach to protect nature, culture, and community in the 21st Century.

Contact Ernest Cook, Interim Network Director, for more information. 

Contributions of news, upcoming events, and resources for future Bulletins are welcomed. We also welcome inquires for future "Perspectives: Landscapes Conservation in Action" stories; please be in touch if you are interested in sharing stories and insights from your work.

The Network for Landscape Conservation is a fiscally sponsored project of the Center for Large Landscape Conservation, P.O. Box 1587, Bozeman, MT 59771

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