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International Land Conservation Network Newsletter, December 2018
Edited by Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler, Project Coordinator for Land Conservation Programs at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy,

First Peer Learning Exchange for Large Landscape Conservation brings together conservation practitioners from North and South America

Four teams of leaders in large landscape conservation initiatives came together from October 19-21, 2018 for the first Peer Learning Exchange for Large Landscape Conservation, convened by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and facilitated by Shawn Johnson, director of the Center for Natural Resources and the Environment at the University of Montana. The teams – from the Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California, the Route of Parks in Chilean Patagonia, the northeastern Appalachian Trail in New England, and Chile’s Mediterranean forests – shared insights, experiences, and challenges for large landscape conservation related to law and policy, governance, finance, and land management.
The purpose of the Exchange is to document and share the results of conversations among experts and practitioners on best practices and promising approaches for large landscape conservation, provide insights and examples of how a peer learning network such as this one can facilitate and empower landscape conservation efforts at multiple scales, and jointly address challenges the teams are facing on the ground in their landscapes.
This first convening was hosted by the California team, which took the group from Pepperwood Preserve in the Santa Rosa mountains through the Golden Gate National Recreation Area down to Mount Umunhum in the Santa Cruz mountains. Over the course of an intensive three day series of presentations and site visits, the group of 15 practitioners built lasting relationships and learned about the unique places and situations each group is navigating in its efforts to conserve large and complex landscapes. In March 2019, this group will reconvene in Chile to continue this ongoing conversation about successes, opportunities, and innovations to achieve their objectives.

In this newsletter:
Highlights from the ILCN
We are excited to share stories from ILCN members. If you have a successful conservation initiative, story, event, or webinar to share, then please contact us at

ELCN / ILCN Global Congress in Barcelona
April 22-24, 2020
We are very excited to announce the Third Global Congress of the International Land Conservation Network will take place in Barcelona, Spain in April 2020!  The Congress will be hosted in conjunction with our partners at the European Land Conservation Network (ELCN). 

Please look out for more details and a call for presentation proposals in the coming months.  Registration will open for the Congress in 2019.  Please save the date on your calendars, we look forward to seeing you there!
ILCN hosts study tour with Chinese land conservationists in New England

In October the ILCN hosted its third study tour with a group of Chinese conservationists from organizations including the Paradise Foundation, TNC-China, and WWF-China.  The group attended the 2018 Land Trust Alliance Rally in Pittsburgh, where they attended sessions on topics including conservation finance, easements, and land stewardship.  They also presented on the group’s efforts to promote land conservation efforts in China at the International Breakfast, which was hosted by the ILCN.

The group then traveled to Boston where the ILCN organized meetings with some of the oldest and most established conservation groups in the United States, including the Trustees of Reservations, Mass Audubon, the Massachusetts Land Trust Coalition, and The Nature Conservancy.  Afterwards, the study tour group traveled west to the Harvard Forest and Kestrel Land Trust, where they met with local conservation leaders and got to experience the fall in New England through some walks in the woods.  The last leg of the study tour focused on large landscape conservation in Hanover, New Hampshire, where the group met with representatives of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Trust for Public Land, the Hanover Conservancy, the Lyme Timber Company, and the town of Hanover. 
The Chinese study tour participants had great questions for each of the speakers—from the details of easement law and conservation finance to how local land trusts engage with volunteers.  They also spent time planning their emerging land conservation network in China and their continued involvement with the ILCN. 

The ILCN would like to thank all the gracious organizations and landowners who hosted the study tour.  For more information about the Chinese conservation group, please contact Jin Tong at
ILCN Advisory Council Spotlight: Henry Tepper

Henry Tepper, who was involved in the formation of the ILCN, has spent twenty-five years as a conservation leader in both the United States and abroad, playing a direct role in protecting almost one million acres in North and Latin America.  He is currently a Boston-based conservation and strategic planning consultant working on projects that range from writing a Climate Change Tool Kit for the Land Trust Alliance, to writing a business plan for three NGOs proposing the creation of a zero-interest conservation and restoration loan fund for the five states in the US Gulf of Mexico, to serving as a strategic advisor to the Fundacion Tierra Austral’s El Boldo to Cantillana initiative in Chile.  He is also an Instructor in the Master’s Program in Sustainability at the Harvard University Extension School, where he co-created and co-teaches a class called "Land Conservation Practice in the United States and Around the World.”
Henry has served as President of Mass Audubon, one of the largest environmental organizations in New England; Chief Conservation Officer of Patagonia Sur, LLC, a private conservation real estate company in Chilean Patagonia; and Director of The Nature Conservancy's State Programs in both New Hampshire and in New York State. As TNC-NY's Director, Henry led four forest conservation projects in the Adirondack Park totaling more than 350,000 acres. 

Henry served on the 2018 ILCN Global Congress Planning Committee—for which he curated the Law & Policy track of the Congress and moderated two sessions—and also attended the first ILCN Global Congress in Berlin in 2015.  He is currently involved with the planning of the ILCN’s inaugural Large Landscaper Peer Learning Exchange with organizations from Chile and United States, which recently completed its first session in California. 

Candice Stevens of Birdlife South Africa was recently awarded the Pathfinder Award Special Commendation for her work with biodiversity tax incentives in South Africa.  The award, which recognizes exceptional and innovative solutions for protected and conserved areas, was presented jointly to Stevens and the South African Government’s Department of Environmental Affairs to recognize the achievement of creating the first ever biodiversity tax incentive for landowners and communities who have declared and maintained protected areas through South Africa’s biodiversity stewardship initiative.
The biodiversity tax incentive was created through the introduction of a new section in South Africa’s Income Tax Act known as Section 37D, which provides a tax break in exchange for a commitment to conservation.  This allows for the value of a protected area to be deducted from the taxable income of a landowner or community, thus increasing the financial sustainability of protected natural areas and bolstering the viability of economic activities relating to biodiversity, such as eco-tourism.  The passage of Section 37D is estimated to contribute over 1 billion Rand (about 72 million US dollars) to South Africa’s conservation efforts by 2026.  
Stevens is Birdlife South Africa’s Policy and Advocacy Programme Manager and in that capacity also works closely with the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), which coordinates public and civic sector conservation efforts in the country.  She is also active with the ILCN, having served as a presenter for a session on financial incentives for conservation at the ILCN Global Congress in Santiago, Chile.  She is also active in exploring the creation of a Global Tax Working Group. The Pathfinder Award is administered jointly by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and its World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) as well as WildArk.  Stevens and the South African government were chosen for the award from a pool of more than 200 nominations. 

Several years ago the ILCN helped launch the Chile California Conservation Exchange – a project now sponsored by the California Council of Land Trusts, Fundación Tierra Austral and the Chile California Council. The Exchange just concluded its second annual conference - this year in Santa Cruz, California. Thirty-two Chilean government officials including Felipe Ward, Minister of National Assets (Bienes Nacionales), former governors Dr. Jorge Flies and Patricio Vallespin, and a complement of NGO and other leaders came north to discuss with US and California peers (1) coastal zone management, (2) the formidable tax impediments to conservation philanthropy in Chile, and (3) the idea of a national conservation alliance for Chile. The latter discussion was moderated by ILCN’s Laura Johnson.
The Exchange project was inspired by the remarkably similar landscapes and longstanding ties between Chile and California. The Nation and State share a vital interest in the marine environment; and California has had over 40 years of experience with coastal zone planning and regulation, which is of great interest to the Chileans who are considering a government reorganization that would affect how the coastal zone in Chile is managed. Speakers included Sam Schuchat, Executive Officer of the California Coastal Conservancy, Charles Lester, former Executive Director of the California Coastal Commission now with UC Santa Barbara, Rebecca Smyth of NOAA and Professor Gary Griggs, Distinguished Professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at UC Santa Cruz. Matias Alcalde of Fundación Punta de Lobos and other NGO leaders addressed current coastal opportunities and challenges in Chile.
A report on the conference and copies of the presentations will be posted on the website of the Chile California Conservation Exchange.

For information about the Chile California Conservation Exchange project’s plans for 2019 contact Ralph Benson at

ELCN's 2nd Workshop held on "Incentives for Private Land Conservation"

More than 30 experts and practitioners in private land conservation from across Europe gathered in Madrid, Spain for the second workshop organized by the European Land Conservation Network from November 5-7, 2018. The meeting, which was organized by ELCN Project Coordinator Tilmann Disselhoff and generously hosted by the Fundacion Biodiversidad, focused on incentives and landowner motivations for private land conservation. Through a series of presentations and small group discussions, participants explored the potential of conservation organizations and public authorities to create positive incentives – whether fiscal, legal, or social – to encourage and enable private landowners to engage in nature conservation on their land.
Angelo Salsi, head of unit of the European Commission’s LIFE and Eco-Innovation programs, opened the meeting with the current state of private land conservation in the European Union. Joseph van der Stegen of the European Commission, made the case for the importance of creating new incentives for private land conservation in the EU, and Oxford University’s Jennifer Gooden’s opening presentation delved deeper into the psychology of incentives for the conservation of nature. Anne Sophie Mulier, from the European Landowners Organization, brought in the diversity of landowner experiences and perspectives as a critical component of future tools and incentives, and Joseph-Maria Mallarach of the Silene Association emphasized the role of ethical motives for private land conservation.
Presenters shared inspiring case studies with the group: Brendan Dunford, from the Burren Programme, discussed the experience of farmers in the Burren Region, Ireland of merging pocket, head, and heart to conserve farmland and biodiversity, and Ignacio Puig from Fundacio ENT updated the group on the successes and challenges of payments for ecosystem services in Catalonia. Interest in trans-atlantic knowledge exchange grew as Will Abberger of The Trust for Public Land described the bipartisan successes of ballot measures in raising funds for private land conservation in the United States, and Phil Tabas of The Nature Conservancy discussed the role of tax incentives in allowing landowners to mobilize intrinsic and financial motivations for conservation.  The workshop concluded with a field trip to a private game reserve close to Madrid, where the Friends of the Iberian Imperial Eagle Foundation demonstrated the conservation practices implemented on private lands with four nests of the endangered Iberian imperial eagle.
Following the success of this gathering, participants and European partners are looking forward to the third and final workshop to be hosted by the ELCN in Romania in northern summer 2019.

For more information about the ELCN, contact Tilmann Disselhoff at 
Scaling up conservation finance in Australia: Practitioners gather for conservation finance intensive in Melbourne

Increasing conservation finance flows in Australia depends on developing a shared understanding across sectors about the fundamentals about conservation finance models, current practice and case studies, and risks and returns. To this end, Trust for Nature and the Australian Land Conservation Alliance (ALCA) presented a two-day Conservation Finance Intensive on November 8 and 9 in Melbourne for professionals from the conservation, agriculture, banking, investment, government and insurance sectors wanting to scale up conservation finance and find innovative ways to combine conservation with sustainable land management.
The forum included expert panels, practical activities, interactive case studies and networking sessions with local and international conservation experts and practitioners. Conference co-organizers Dr. Adrian Ward, Conservation Finance Advisor and Marnie Lassen, Strategic Projects Manager from Trust for Nature Victoria, led interactive sessions and set the stage for the group. Peter Howell, Executive Vice President of Conservation Capital & Research Programs at the Open Space Institute, gave a keynote on the role of intermediaries in conservation finance as well as a presentation on creative uses of philanthropy –“stretching every dollar to get more conservation” together with Melinda Macleod, Program Director of Environmental Resilience at BHP Billiton Foundation.   
ILCN co-founder Peter Stein, Managing Director at the Lyme Timber Company in Hanover, New Hampshire, gave a keynote address on the evolution of conservation finance and closing remarks on the power of networks through the experience of the U.S.-based Conservation Finance Network: “I was impressed by the depth of interest and technical expertise from the 120+ participants in the first ever Conservation Finance Intensive held in Melbourne, in early November. Broad representation from the finance sector, philanthropy and major conservation and land restoration NGOs plus key government and indigenous community policy makers made for a very engaged and content rich 2 day workshop.”
Prior to and in preparation for the Intensive, ALCA, together with the Australian Government Department of Environment and Energy (DoEE) and the Conservation Finance Network, undertook a thorough and comprehensive review of international and Australian conservation finance approaches in a powerful Scoping Paper: Expanding Finance Opportunities to Support Private Land Conservation in Australia. ALCA is working with DoEE to establish a network of conservation finance and allied practitioners throughout the country to foster critical long-term relationships between the government, private sector, and NGOs and inspire significant future efforts to support private land conservation.
Victoria Marles, CEO of Trust For Nature, remarked after the conclusion of the Intensive: “Trust for Nature was thrilled to lead this important work on behalf of the Australian Land Conservation Alliance. The Intensive revealed a real hunger from professionals across all sectors on finance models that can accelerate the flow of funding into conservation in Australia. We’re very grateful for the Conservation Finance Network’s input into our work and look forward to capturing the momentum shown at the Intensive so that we can help convert it to on-ground conservation impact.”
12th Latin American Congress of Private Nature Reserves held in Peru

For more than two decades, leaders in voluntary conservation in Latin America have been gathering to strengthen actions and efforts for citizen-led land conservation across more than fourteen countries. This year, the Peruvian Society for Environmental Rights (SPDA) and Conservamos por Naturaleza organized the 12th formal meeting of leaders and citizens engaging with private and civic land conservation, with the generous partnership of the Latin American Federation of Natural Reserve Networks, the Network for Voluntary Conservation of Amazonas (AMA), Amazonicos for Amazonia (AMPA), the Peruvian Association for the Conservation of Nature (APECO), the Peruvian National Service for State Protected Areas (SERNAMP), and the Peruvian Ministry of the Environment (MINAM).
This most recent congress, hosted by Casa Hacienda Achamaqui in the valley of Utcubamba, convened from November 5-9 in Amazonas, Peru. Ninety-six participants from ten countries and eleven 
networks for private and civic land conservation (including a Latin-America wide network, five regional networks, and five national networks) attended the event. Fourty-four landholders were present, as well as representatives from nine smallholder communities.
Organized around the theme “Connecting to Create,” the meeting included four tracks: Financial Sustainability, Effective Manage of Private Nature Reserves, Communications, and Political and Legal Advocacy. Through workshops, roundtables, lectures, videos, and a field tour, participants addressed these topics along with a specific section on conservation innovation, which included workshops on technology in which attendees learned how to use drones and online tools such as Global Forest Warch.
Participants will be asked to follow up in the coming year regarding the long-term ties and projects which emerge out of the congress, which enabled almost 100 people from around Latin America to meet and create important linkages and communications platforms for Latin American conservation networks. During the congress, participants held a separate meeting to discuss next steps for the Latin American Network of Private Natural Reserves (RENALA), as well as to discuss the plans for a new network of private natural reserves in South America.
IUCN releases "Guidelines for Privately Protected Areas" publication

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) recently released its World Commission on Protected Areas’ report titled “Guidelines for Privately Protected Areas”.  The guidelines feature contributions from organizations, individuals, and landholders on how best to manage, monitor, and conserve privately protected areas (PPAs) around the world, as well as case studies for context.   The report is an important step towards increased international recognition of the important contribution that PPAs play in the conservation of biodiversity around the globe.
The goal for the report is to serve as a helpful tool for both conservation practitioners and policymakers to better support PPAs in the future.  In addition to practical advice surrounding the maintenance and regulation of PPAs, the report discusses their importance in meeting international terrestrial conservation goals such as the Conventional on Biological Diversity’s Aichi Target 11 and other post-2020 targets. 
The guidelines report is the latest in the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas’ Best Practices Guidelines series.  It will be followed by the publication of guidelines on Other Effective Area-Based Conservation Measures (OECMs). 

The full report can be read at:
Upcoming Events:

The Importance of Private Land Conservation in the EU
February 5,  2019

"On February 5 2019, the Intergroup "Biodiversity, Hunting, Countryside" of the European Parliament will host an informal exchange between members of the EP and civil society on the importance of private land conservation in the EU"


ELCN Workshop on Cooperation for Private Land Conservation

June 3-5, 2019
Sighisoara, Romania

"The third International workshop of the ELCN will deal with the topic of “Cooperation for Private Land Conservation”. The workshop, which will take place in Shighisoara, Romania from 3-5 June 2019, will explore examples of successful cooperative models for private land conservation. It will tackle the question of how conservationists, landowners, land users, public authorities and other stakeholders can best work together to foster private land conservation."


The Nature of Cities Summit
June 4-7, 2019

Paris, France

"A first-ever gathering of The Nature of Cities community where thought leaders from communities of practice, policy, and academia come together to discuss the nature of cities—green cities that are better for people and nature. The TNOC Summit will be a gathering unlike any before in its commitment to convening diverse voices and actors in support of propelling a movement for collaborative green cities."


2019 Conservation Finance Bootcamp
June 24-28, 2019

Portland, OR, USA

"The 13th annual Conservation Finance Boot Camp will be held June 24-28th, 2019, at Portland State University in Portland, OR. The Boot Camp is a week-long, intensive training course to help mid-career professionals utilize innovative and effective financing strategies for land and resource conservation, restoration, and stewardship."

Many thanks to our content contributors for this newsletter: Ralph Benson, Chandni Navalkha, Peter Stein, Victoria Marles, and Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler 

December 2018
The mission of the International Land Conservation Network is to connect organizations and people around the world that are accelerating voluntary private and civic sector action that protects and stewards land and water resources. 
Learn more at

The ILCN in a project of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.
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