NRI releases first Conservation Easements in Texas publication

The goal of the Conservation Easements in Texas report is to describe the state’s current participation and growing need for land conservation easements. Through incorporation of several datasets, we developed a framework for evaluating the conservation value of lands currently protected under conservation easements in Texas. Data on conservation easements located within the state of Texas was provided by the Texas Land Trust Council. Datasets including agricultural production value and wildlife lease prices by county from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts were used to determine an overall agricultural production value and wildlife value of all conservation easements statewide. Average annual rainfall, infiltration rates, and relative costs of water capture derived from the Texas Water Development Board’s State Water Plan 2017 were collectively analyzed to determine an overall water value of conservation easements in Texas. Together, these three broad categories: agricultural production, water, and wildlife illustrate the value of the natural goods, services, and benefits that conservation easements provide.

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