Making the land pay

  Farmers and ranchers can supplement their incomes by putting tourists to work as "hands' and allowing camping and hiking. That's a way to make land pay and stave off selling out to developers, according to a new report about protecting wildlife habitat around Yellowstone National Park. The Greater Yellowstone Coalition, the Environmental Defense Fund and the World Wildlife Fund teamed up to write the 51-page Incentives for Conserving Open Lands in Greater Yellowstone. Its goal, says Dennis Glick, stewardship program director for the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, is to "make citizens in the Rocky Mountain region aware that there are many approaches to preserving open lands." Other suggestions include getting tax breaks for landowners who voluntarily sell their land to a conservation group, encouraging local governments to purchase development rights, and revitalizing the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund to help purchase easements. For a copy of the report, contact the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, P.O. Box 1872, Bozeman, MT 59771 (406/586-1593) [email protected]


* Tim Westby


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