In December, the Nebraska Land Trust (NLT) was invited to become a member of the Partnership of Rangeland Trusts (PORT), which is relatively small in numbers but very large in impact. PORT is an alliance of eight agricultural-focused western land trusts dedicated to preserving America’s working farms and ranches. One thing that distinguishes PORT members is their close and strong affiliations with their state livestock associations. The Nebraska Cattlemen and Sandhills Cattle Association both serve on the NLT Board of Directors.
“Small but mighty” is how Dave Sands, executive director of the NLT describes PORT. Facts support this description as PORT members have conserved more than 2.2 million acres of the American west. Nationally, this represents roughly one in every six acres currently conserved through conservation easements held by private, non-profit organizations. PORT was also an exceptionally valuable and effective partner with the Land Trust Alliance in pushing for positive changes to conservation easement programs in the new Farm Bill. In addition, PORT represents the needs of agricultural producers in national land conservation policy and within America’s broader land trust community, while enhancing the sharing of information and expertise.
“The Partnership of Rangeland Trusts is thrilled to add the Nebraska Land Trust to our membership,” said Erik Glenn, executive director of the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust and chair of the PORT Board of Directors. “NLT is well-respected in the world of private land conservation and production agriculture. They have demonstrated a commitment to doing conservation in a manner that promotes working lands and the sustainability of agricultural families. These are fundamental principles of PORT. NLT has also proven to be an effective advocate on a national level for agricultural producers who voluntarily choose to conserve their lands”