More than 1/3 of land protected by The Nature Conservancy in Virginia is now public land
Charlottesville, VA — In recognition of Virginia Public Lands Day on September 30, 2017, The Nature Conservancy is joining with state partners to cohost a series of special events all over Virginia, included guided hikes, paddle trips, and volunteer cleanups. The events will be held at Kiptopeke State Park, Nottoway River/Chub Sandhill Natural Area Preserve, Douthat State Park, and The Pinnacle Natural Area Preserve.
Approximately 3.7 million acres of land in Virginia – nearly 15% of the state – is managed for public benefit. That includes 37 state parks, 24 state forests, and 41 wildlife management areas featuring over 900 miles of trails and access to a wide range of outdoor activities. Outdoor recreation in Virginia is also a major economic engine, generating $21.9 billion in consumer spending every year. For all these reasons and more, the Virginia General Assembly has officially designated the last Saturday in September as Virginia Public Lands Day, which coincides with National Public Lands Day.
As one of the largest conservation organizations working in the state of Virginia, The Nature Conservancy has long made the protection of public lands one of its priorities. In fact, the Conservancy has had a role in the creation of more than 120,000 acres of public land in Virginia, much of it through land transferred to the state by the Conservancy. That adds up to more than 1/3 of the 346,000 total acres the Conservancy has protected in the commonwealth. [Read more…]