Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet applauded an agreement between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and private land owner Louis Bacon that protects nearly 90,000 acres for landscape and wildlife conservation purposes in the San Luis Valley. The agreement is the largest conservation easement the Fish and Wildlife Service has enacted in the nation.
“Conservation easements allow us to protect land in its undeveloped state and to preserve our agricultural heritage and wildlife habitats. These are fundamental parts of what it is to be in the West,” Bennet said. “The San Luis Valley and Sangre de Cristo area contain some of the state’s most beautiful and breathtaking lands. This agreement will allow Coloradans and visitors to enjoy these scenic landscapes for years to come.
During the markup of the 2012 Farm Bill in the Senate Agriculture Committee, Bennet secured a provision in the bill to provide flexibility that will allow more land owners and producers to use conservation easements to preserve their land’s agricultural heritage and open space. He has also introduced two amendments to further enhance the conservation easement programs.