Gaining Ground

Maryland

570,999

Acres Protected

That’s about 432,575 football fields!

Land trusts have already conserved 61 million acres of private land across the nation — more than all of the national parks combined. Help us conserve another 60 million acres by the end of the decade.

Together, let’s keep Gaining Ground.

Visitors to Land Trust Properties

65,088

Visitors in 2020, more than triple that of 2015.

Percent of Land Trusts That Provide Public Access to Their Lands

67%

Land trusts provide opportunities to recreate and recharge.

Number of People Served

91,530

Land trusts provide programs and activities to get people outside and learn about the land.

Miles of Trails

36

Walking, hiking and other outdoor recreation improve people's health and well-being.

Miles With Universal Access

3

Universal access trails are designed to be used by all people, regardless of ability.

Percent of Land Trusts Who Increased Community Engagement in the Last Five Years

75%

Land Trusts Are Deepening Relationships With:
  • People from various racial and ethnic backgrounds

  • Older adults or those living in retirement communities

  • People who identify as LGBTQ+

  • People living with disabilities

  • Veterans

Land Trusts Are Helping Address Community Needs, Including:
  • Youth education and development

  • Community and economic development

  • Food security and agriculture

  • Health and wellness

  • Social and environmental justice

Demographics

Every land trust is as unique as the community it serves.

Maryland land trusts are community-led and supported and protect lands and waters that help the entire state.

Active Land Trusts

39

A land trust is a nonprofit that conserves land by acquiring and stewarding land or conservation easements.

Learn more about land trusts
Alliance Member Land Trusts

22

Land Trust Alliance members commit to adopting Land Trust Standards and Practices as their guiding principles.

Learn about the land trust alliance
Accredited Land Trusts

5

Accredited land trusts undergo a thorough review of their practices in governance, finance, transactions and stewardship.

Learn about land trust accreditation

People

  • Members/financial supporters

    7,105

  • Volunteers

    8,881

  • Full-time staff

    60

  • Part-time staff

    21

  • Board members

    377

Land Trust Longevity

  • Oldest

    55 years old (1967)

  • Youngest

    8 years old (2014)

  • Median age

    30 years old

Percent of Land Trusts Who Increased Focus on Climate Change in the Last Five Years

88%

Percent of Land Trusts Receiving Funding to Address Climate Change

25%

Sources of Funding to Address Climate Change
  • Envioronmental Protection Agency

  • Department of Natural Resources

  • The Chesapeake Bay Trust

Land Protected

There has been a 14% increase in Maryland land protected by land trusts since 2010.

Acre by acre, land trusts are helping to conserve Maryland lands, waters and ways of life.

2010
2015
2020
Total acres protected
502,210
528,590
570,999
+14%
Under easement
258,127
276,806
307,703
+19%
Owned
156,282
160,630
160,534
+3%
Acquired and reconveyed
36,431
36,403
39,937
+10%
Protected by other means
51,371
54,934
62,826
+22%

Disclaimer: Land trusts conserve land in many different ways and every project is unique. Category totals may change depending on how acres are reported by survey respondents to reflect the most current data and minimize double-counting. In some instances, the total may be greater than the sum of the separate categories due to organizations that provided total acres not broken down by category.

Percent of Land Owned and Under Easement Held by an Accredited Land Trust

58%

Source: 2020 National Land Trust Census

Total Public Funding for Conservation From 1998-2017

$1 billion

Source: Trust for Public Land's Conservation Almanac

Acres of Land Lost to Development From 2012-2017

24,500

Source: NRCS - Natural Resources Inventory

This information reflects data collected in the National Land Trust Census, the longest-running comprehensive survey of private land conservation in America. Learn more about the Census and see which land trusts participated in the 2020 National Land Trust Census.

Making a Difference

Maryland land trusts are gaining ground.

Land trusts across the state are helping find solutions to some of Maryland's most pressing issues.

  • Providing access to nature for all: Baltimore Green Space partnered with the nonprofit Backyard Basecamp to create BLISS Meadows, a 10-acre land reclamation project that brings educational farming and equitable access to green space in northeast Baltimore.

    Read more

  • Providing local food: American Chestnut Land Trust manages Double Oak Farm, which uses environmentally friendly and sustainable farming methods. In addition, ACLT offers an educational garden demonstrating a dozen methods of natural home gardening and displaying historical and Native American farming techniques. The farm donates approximately 80% of its harvest – which means thousands of pounds of fresh, naturally grown fruits and vegetables are given to those most in need in Calvert County.

    Read more
  • Ensuring water quality: The Potomac River, the source of drinking water for over 5 million residents in the Washington, D.C. area, earned its highest health grade ever in the accredited Potomac Conservancy's 10th State of the Nation's River report. The Potomac's health has improved to a B, up from a B- in 2016 and a D in 2011.

    Read more

Land Trusts Working in Maryland

Land Trust Alliance member land trusts, listed below, commit to adopting Land Trust Standards and Practices as their guiding principles.