March 23, 2015

SUL ROSS TO HOST APRIL 30 SEMINAR ON CHANGING LAND USE

TALT


In response to rapidly changing land use in the Trans-Pecos region of Texas, the Borderlands Research Institute at Sul Ross State University, has partnered with Texas Agricultural Land Trust and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service to host Going, Going, Gone: Changing Land Use in the Trans-Pecos and its Impact on Ranching and Wildlife, a free seminar for landowners on April 30, at the Espino Conference Center on the Sul Ross State University campus in Alpine.

Texas experienced a net loss of nearly 1.1 million acres of privately-owned farms, ranches and forests from 1997 to 2012, continuing the trend of rural land loss and fragmentation in Texas, according to the recently released Texas Land Trends study done by the Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources (IRNR). The director of IRNR, Dr. Roel Lopez will present findings of the study at the Going, Going, Gone seminar. He says, “this dramatic loss and fragmentation of privately-owned farms, ranches and forests—also known as working lands—is affecting the state’s rural economies, the conservation of water and other natural resources, and the nation’s food security.”

Dr. Louis Harveson, Director of Borderlands Research Institute explains that, “the Trans-Pecos is one of the most unique and rare areas of Texas. We want landowners to be prepared for the onslaught of changes that are coming our way so we can be proactive in conserving the ranching and wildlife heritage of the Trans-Pecos.” This seminar will help landowners understand the land trends that affect them, tools for managing this change and how to protect, conserve and pass on their working agricultural lands to future generations.

Blair Fitzsimons, Chief Executive Officer of Texas Agricultural Land Trust (TALT), says, “stewardship requires stewards. Without families to remain on the land, how can we ensure that our working agricultural lands – which are our most precious resource – will remain for generations to come?” The public is invited to learn how to protect family lands and retain their character. Topics will include: Updated Data from the Texas Land Trends Study, The Impact of Changing Land Use on Wildlife and Water, The Future of Ranching in the Trans-Pecos (ranchers panel discussion), Conserve and Pass Down: The Agricultural Conservation Easement as a Tool to Help Keep Family Lands Together, Conservation Tools for Private Land Conservation.

This event will take place from 10:00-2:00 April 30th at Espino Conference Center, Morgan University Center, Ave. B & Harrison Street, Campus Entrance #4, Sul Ross State University, Alpine, Texas, and is free to the public. Registration opens at 9:30 am. Lunch will be provided for those who register before April 23rd. Visit http://www.txaglandtrust.org to view the full agenda. Call (210) 569-6972 or register online at www.regonline.com/goingone.