NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Feb. 9, 2022) – The Open Space Institute (OSI), TennGreen Land Conservancy, and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) today announced a priority acquisition in central Tennessee to connect sections of the celebrated Cumberland Trail. The forested property, which has been identified as highly effective at storing carbon and providing biodiverse habitat in the face of climate change, also marks the first conservation victory in the Southeast of OSI’s groundbreaking Appalachian Landscapes Protection Fund (ALPF).
OSI’s $18 million ALPF supports land protection along the Appalachian Mountain range, home of the world’s largest broadleaf forest. This region stores most of the nation’s forest carbon while providing essential climate refuge for plants and animals.
"The successful conservation of Piney River Bluffs is a resounding victory in the long-term effort to protect the fragile forests of the Southeast's Appalachian Mountain region in the face of a changing climate," said Joel Houser, OSI's Southeast field coordinator. "This great conservation project came together thanks to a strong public-private partnership, and we thank the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation and TennGreen Land Conservancy for their efforts in securing this resounding win on behalf of the people of Tennessee."
OSI’s ALPF is made possible thanks to major support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and additional funding from Lyndhurst, Riverview, and Tucker foundations, and the McKee family from Collegedale, TN.