June/July  2017

Living Landscape Observer - Nature, Culture, Community
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September 6-8, 2017
San Antonio TX

Living Landscape Observer
Culture & Nature: Thoughts on the English Lake District
At every level, conservation practioners labor to understand and balance natural and cultural values at a landscape scale. Globally, this challenge plays out in the push and pull of the World Heritage inscription process. The recent (July 2017) inscription by the World Heritage Committee of the English Lake District highlights some of the challenges and opportunities of attempting to  integrate cultural and natural values. No question this is a celebrated and iconic landscape, but there have been bumps along the way to gaining World Heritage recognition.  Read the full story here.

Energy and Natural Resources Bill Introduced 
At close to 900 pages, Senate Bill 1460 is far from light reading. Introduced by Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK, at right) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA, at left), the legislation covers a huge number of topics ranging from infrastructure to federal lands management to energy efficiency and more. It builds on the Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015, which passed the Senate before falling short of votes in a conference with the House late last year. Read more for details on the bill and media coverage of its potential implications. 

Latest News and Information 
Innovation in the Chesapeake Bay: Enabling Precision Conservation
The Chesapeake Conservancy is currently piloting the Chesapeake Bay High-resolution Land Cover Project. Its ground-breaking, high-resolution land cover datasets allow for incredibly precise decision making on conservation and restoration priorities. Efforts of federal, state and local government agencies, nonprofits, and for-profit environmental investment firms all have benefited from the initiative. Watch this video to learn more.

High-resolution earth imagery has provided ecologists and conservationists with a dynamic new tool that is enabling everything from more accurate counting of wildlife populations to rapid detection of deforestation, illegal mining, and other changes in the landscape.

Wolves need more room to roam in order to keep other predators - like  coyotes - in check. However, that's not happening in the Pacific Northwest.   University of Washington researchers say only in the northern regions of Canada and parts of Alaska can wolves move across large landscapes.

In 2014, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)  identified climate change  as the biggest potential threat to natural World Heritage sites and  found 136 of 700 cultural World Heritage sites to be at long-term risk from sea level rise.
At least four of the new World Heritage sites designated by UNESCO at the annual meeting of the World Heritage Committee this week are under serious threat from climate change.

About Us

The Living Landscape Observer is a website, blog and monthly e-newsletter that offers commentary and information on the emerging field of large landscape conservation. This approach emphasizes the preservation of a "sense of place" and blends ingredients of land conservation, heritage preservation, and sustainable community development. Learn more about how you can get involved or sign up for the newsletter here.  

Our Mission: To provide observations and information on the emerging fields of landscape scale conservation, heritage preservation and sustainable community development.