160 Acres of Parklands Now Protected
The Dauphin Island Park and Beach Board (DIPBB) has secured protection of more than 160 acres of public parklands through a conservation easement with Atlantic Coast Conservancy and Pelican Coast Conservancy (ACC/PCC). Through this historic easement, the protected land will remain in its natural state and not be available for private or commercial purchase or development.
“We’re thrilled to announce that our parklands are now perpetually protected through this conservation easement, and Dauphin Island will have enhanced land, water, and wildlife conservation on the Island for future generations,” said Matthew Capps, executive director of DIPBB. “Dauphin Island has been blessed with some of the most pristine natural resources in Alabama. Every visit to one of our parks is an opportunity for an entire family to learn and interact with the natural and cultural history of Coastal Alabama. This easement ensures families and children will be enjoying our healthy parks for years to come and the quality of life we know today in Coastal Alabama.”
The DIPBB properties included in the conservation easement are Cadillac Square, Audubon Bird Sanctuary, and the Dauphin Island Campground. In addition to ensuring the future growth of the parklands, the easement will also protect the critical and prime migratory bird sites for the state of Alabama.
“The placement of this conservation easement on the 160-acre Audubon Sanctuary and other parklands will add a double layer of protection to these important historical, cultural and ecological sites,” said Walter Ernest, director of operations of the PCC. “The Audubon Sanctuary is a globally important birding area and has over 250 species of neotropical migratory birds that inhabit the site during their migration. We are fortunate that we can assist in conserving the important conservation values of the island’s parklands and Audubon Bird Sanctuary that were recognized by the Late Dr. Wilson Gaillard and the Mobile Chamber of Commerce during the development of Dauphin Island. Conservation is not about today; it is about working to ensure today’s conservation values will be here tomorrow.”
The conservation easement will also allow DIPBB to maintain the integrity of Dauphin Island’s existing natural resources while improving boardwalks and trails as well as shoreline and forestry restoration projects.
The Dauphin Island Park & Beach Board
The Dauphin Island Park & Beach Board is a non-profit corporation that provides recreational opportunities to the public. The DIPBB’s prime responsibilities are to provide family recreational opportunities to the public while promoting tourism to Alabama’s coast. The DIPBB has around 265 acres of parkland including 10 park facilities. The park system emphasizes leisure activities, outdoor recreation, environmental education, and public beach access. Each park facility offers a variety of programming generally directed toward the natural features and characteristics of the site. For more information about this project, please contact Matthew Capps, Executive Director.
The Atlantic Coast Conservancy and Pelican Coast Conservancy
The Atlantic Coast Conservancy and Pelican Coast Conservancy is a non-profit organization located in Jasper, Ga. The ACC was founded in 2010 and expanded the company’s operations to the Gulf of Mexico in 2012 by launching the Pelican Coast Conservancy in Mobile, Ala. The ACC/PCC holds approximately 25,000 acres of protected land in five states (Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia). In 2013, the ACC/PCC closed 51 easements totaling approximately 23,000 acres. For more information about this project, please contact Walter Ernest, Director of Operations of PCC or Dr. Robert Keller, President of ACC.
Partners that are available for interviews for this project:
John Porter, Dauphin Island Bird Sanctuaries
Ralph Havard, Dauphin Island Bird Sanctuaries
Don McKee, Dauphin Island Bird Sanctuaries
For additional media contacts please contact Matthew Capps, Executive Director of DIPBB
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What is a Conservation Easement?
A conservation easement is a legally binding contract between a landowner and a land Conservancy. With this contract, the landowner agrees to permanently protect specific uses of the land while retaining ownership and control. The landowner and land Conservancy work together to determine which uses should be prohibited to protect the conservation values of the land and which uses should be retained for future generations. In accepting the easement, the land Conservancy is obligated to forever ensure the provisions of the easement are upheld.
What a Conservation Easement does?
An easement agreement typically:
- Restricts the uses of a property as necessary to protect its important natural, scenic and historic features
- Specifies the number, type and locations of dwellings and other buildings
- Prohibits quarrying and excavation of minerals
- Prohibits dumping of solid and liquid waste
- Limits the removal of trees without an approved management plan
- Restricts or eliminates industrial and commercial activities.