Benefits of Conserving Land

Lily pads float on a river creek.Georgia is a wonderful place to live, work, and raise a family. It is also a state blessed with natural beauty, full of natural resources and rich in history. But what kind of State will we leave our children and our grandchildren? Georgia is among the fastest growing states in the nation and development pressures are still great. On average, 108 acres are converted from forest and farmland to rooftops, parking lots, and roadways every day in Georgia.

The Georgia Land Conservation Program works to identify and protect the state's most important natural, agricultural and historic resources. Protecting these areas saves endangered wildlife, supports agricultural economies and increases quality of life and land values in local communities. Learn what you can do to support land conservation in Georgia by reading the materials below and visiting our Resources page.

Did you know that...

  • Each acre of swamps, wetlands and floodplains provide natural (and free) water filtration, supply & treatment benefits that would cost up to $90,000 per year to provide otherwise?
  • Property within one-half mile of permanently protected open space is worth 5-25% more than similar property further away; and in one Georgia community, increased property values around one park provide $43,490 in additional tax revenues per year?
  • Condominiums around Centennial Olympic Park increased by 117% in value after the park was completed? (Source: American Planning Association)
  • Working farms and forests are 'revenue-positive' land uses for communities (requiring only $0.37 in public services for every $1 in taxes paid), while residential developments are 'revenue-negative' land uses (requiring $1.15 in services for every $1 in taxes paid)?
  • Privately-owned forest lands contribute over $37 billion per year in ecosystem services to Georgia?
  • Forested lands absorb air pollutants that are expensive to prevent otherwise? (Atlanta lost forested open spaces between 1974 and 1996 that would have absorbed 11 million pounds of pollutants that cost $28 million per year to abate. Source: American Forests)
  • Georgia is the sixth most biologically diverse state, and improper land uses are among the most significant threats to the state's species diversity? (Source: Georgia Department of Natural Resources)
  • Outdoor recreation attracts nearly 2 million out-of-state tourists to Georgia every year, and hunting/fishing alone generates $61.5 million in annual sales tax revenues, supports over 20,000 jobs and has an overal econoimc benefit of $2 billion?

Source: Georgia Forestry Commission