Two years ago in PERC Reports Todd Gartner wrote, “I am helping the American Forest Foundation develop a market-based habitat credit trading system in portions of Georgia and Alabama. The incentive-based framework will complement other efforts in the region to keep the eastern population of the gopher tortoise off the Endangered Species list.”
Today, Gartner, in collaboration with Josh Donlan and James Mulligan of Advanced Conservation Strategies, are ready to launch their first pilot transactions.
Here is how the gopher tortoise candidate conservation marketplace is being designed and piloted:
- An interested and eligible private landowner (the “seller”) receives a negotiated payment to conserve, manage, or restore longleaf pine forests capable of supporting healthy populations of gopher tortoises on his or her property. In so doing, the landowner generates gopher tortoise habitat credits.