Southcentral Alaskans benefit from clean drinking water and wild foods such as salmon, moose and caribou. Lots of people live in Southcentral Alaska- and so do a lot of animals. Healthy and thriving wildlife habitat and living with Big Wild Life is what makes Southcentral Alaska so special. Great Land Trust strategically conserves important wildlife habitats, corridors, and open space.
Habitat conservation initiatives include:
Great Land Trust plays a critical role in wetland conservation in Alaska. We identify, prioritize, and conserve the most important wetlands in Southcentral, Alaska – wetlands that will have lasting impact on our community because they are critical for salmon habitat, clean water and retention of potential flood waters. To do this we gather data including wetland type and function, fish and wildlife habitat, land status, and threat of conversion and then map priority areas for conservation. Few undeveloped wetlands remain in the Anchorage Bowl. Strategically protecting these wetlands before they come under further development pressure is a high priority. Great Land Trust operates an in-lieu fee wetlands mitigation program and leverages the fees we collect for wetland mitigation with other conservation dollars to conserve the largest and most important wetlands possible. Using this strategy, Great Land Trust has made landscape-scale wetland conservation successes that benefit people and communities forever.
ExXon valdez oil spill habitat program
GLT was asked by the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council to use geographic information system (GIS) mapping tools to identify and prioritize habitat within the 1989 spill area that had the highest community and ecological value and would be best suited for purchase to mitigate for losses caused by the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill. Working with many partners, parcels were given a score based on the number of conservation values the lands provide. Different data layers were used to assemble the final map of 12 prioritization criteria, including herring spawning areas, juvenile fish habitat, bird colonies/rookeries, marine mammals, terrestrial and coastal wetlands, subsistence use areas, and parcels adjacent to or within protected areas that enhance public access. GLT is now working with landowners, state and federal agencies to facilitate the highest priority conservation projects.
Based on the Mat-Su Salmon Habitat Partnership’s goal to conserve salmon spawning, rearing and overwintering habitat, GLT works to conserve important salmon streams throughout our service area.
sTEWARDSHIP OF CONSERVATION EASEMENTS
Every year we monitor and steward our 36 conservation easements, ensuring their protection in perpetuity.