The Nature Conservancy and the Vermont Land Trust to Sell Atlas Timberlands

Proceeds Will Support further Forestland Protection in Vermont

Montpelier, VT – (RealEstateRama) — The Vermont Land Trust and The Nature Conservancy announced they will sell up to 13 parcels of forestland they own as the Atlas Timberland Partnership, a joint venture the organizations formed in 1997.

The properties encompass 23,691 acres and span 10 Vermont towns: Bakersfield, Belvidere, Craftsbury, Eden, Elmore, Jay, Lowell, Montgomery, Richford, and Westfield.

All parcels will remain undeveloped working forestland, and will be protected with conservation easements held by the Vermont Land Trust that will provide for continued public access. Proceeds from the sales will support additional forestland protection throughout Vermont.

The Atlas Timberland Partnership was formed to demonstrate the co-existence of sustainable forest management practices, biodiversity protection, and traditional public uses. The Partnership’s vision included using the land holdings to finance additional forestland protection over time.

“We have achieved our key goals of sustainable forestry, conservation, public access, habitat protection and quality stewardship for these lands, and are eager to apply these lessons to other conservation investments in Vermont forest,” said Gil Livingston, President of the Vermont Land Trust.

With unbroken forests on the decline in Vermont for the first time in a century due to increasing development pressure, The Nature Conservancy and the Vermont Land Trust are working with the Vermont legislature and state partners to address this important issue.

“As forest parcels get smaller due to development and family parcels get split up as older generations age, sustaining intact forestland for timber, animal habitat, traditional public uses, and other important benefits has become more difficult,” stated Heather Furman, Vermont state director for The Nature Conservancy.

“We are committed to helping Vermont navigate this challenge. The sale of these parcels with permanent working forest conservation easements will ensure they remain intact and provide these values, while generating critical revenue to match and leverage public and private funds for additional forestland protection,” stated Heather Furman, Vermont state director for The Nature Conservancy.

The conservation easements will ensure that the Atlas lands and their valuable natural resources will be protected from development, while ensuring that sustainable forestry and public access will continue. Potential buyers will be thoughtfully considered for their stewardship values and land management practices that reflect the conservation vision of Vermont Land Trust and The Nature Conservancy.

The first parcels to go on the market are the Elmore Pond Tract in Elmore and the Cold Hollow Tract in Bakersfield. These parcels are 1,954 and 2,151 acres, respectively. The properties will be sold with the help of Fountains Land Inc. of Montpelier. Visit our Property for Sale page for descriptions of current offerings.

The Nature Conservancy and the Vermont Land Trust are committed to landscape-scale forestland protection. Conservation must happen at this scale to fully realize the benefits that forests can provide: clean water and air, carbon sequestration and climate change adaption, flood resilience, habitat and natural community protection, recreation, and a robust forest economy that employs an estimated 10,000 Vermonters.

The permanent conservation and sale of the Atlas Timberlands and the reinvestment of resulting proceeds in additional forestland protection in Vermont offer a unique opportunity to advance these goals.

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