In the eyes of conservationist Aldo Leopold, an ethical relationship between the land and the people who benefit from it was "an evolutionary possibility and an ecological necessity." His vision of a "land ethic" is what drives the search for nominees 2012 California Leopold Conservation Award.
The award recognizes private landowners' commitment to responsible environmental stewardship and land management. It underscores the fact that many ranchers, farmers and other private landowners are on the front lines of conservation and should be recognized for protecting the environment. So often, voluntary conservation by private landowners provides the most effective, efficient and durable means of protecting land, water and species.
As in past years, finalists in 2012 will be selected in part based on their commitment to responsible and sustainable land management, the overall health of their land, implementation of innovative practices and dedication to community outreach and leadership. The California Leopold Conservation Award judging panel will evaluate properties in two categories: (1) Nurseries & Crops, and (2) Livestock. In California, the award is presented by the Sand County Foundation, Sustainable Conservation and the California Farm Bureau Federation.
The grand prize of $10,000 and a crystal rendering of Aldo Leopold, author of the "Sand County Almanac," will be presented at the California Farm Bureau Federation's annual convention in December. Runner-up prizes of $1,000 will also be presented.
The deadline for nominations is July 15. For more information and a nomination form, visit http://leopoldconservationaward.org/uploads/LCA_CANom2012_final2.pdf
or contact Sustainable Conservation at (415) 977-0380. For information about past winners and finalists, visit http://suscon.org/leopoldaward/index.php.