Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust earns national recognition

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RANGELEY — The Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust has achieved land trust accreditation from the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, an independent program of the Land Trust Alliance.

Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust conserved more than 13,500 acres of land encompassing over 50 miles of lake and river frontage, 17 islands and more than 500 acres of wetlands. It has been a pioneer in developing a community approach to conservation that prioritized local economic needs in balance with conservation of natural resources.

Also during this time, the organization served as the regional coordinator of the Rangeley Lakes National Scenic Byways program obtaining over $5 million for improvements and enhancements to the Rangeley Region. Beyond general roadway improvements, the enhancements included the Height of Land and Whip Willow scenic overlooks, educational signage and information throughout the byway and public restrooms in Rangeley and Oquossoc. In addition, they created Camp EcoVenture, a summer youth program focusing on outdoor recreation and environmental education that is attended by over 100 youth annually.

Rangeley Lakes Heritage Trust was awarded accreditation this August and is one of 317 land trusts from across the country that has been awarded accreditation since the fall of 2008. Accredited land trusts are authorized to display a seal indicating to the public that they meet national standards for excellence, uphold the public trust and ensure that conservation efforts are permanent. The seal is a mark of distinction in land conservation.

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FMI: http://www.landtrustaccreditation.org/land-trust-locator, www.landtrustaccreditation.org, www.landtrustalliance.org.

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