On October 31, Lancaster County Trust announced the acquisition of 365 acres in the Susquehanna Riverlands landscape. The land was donated to the Conservancy for long-term protection by PPL Holtwood/Talen Energy and is part of the ongoing PPL/Talen/Brookfield project.
This acquisition included the final transfers of land which forms part of the Shenk’s Ferry Wildlife Preserve, Kelly’s Run, and Pinnacle Overlook in Lancaster County, and natural lands adjacent to Otter Creek in York County. A total of 13 tracts valued at over $1.8 million were transferred through donation and grant funding. This is the final Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) grant-funded transfer in a public-private partnership going back more than two decades. An additional 467 acres will be donated by Brookfield sometime in the future.
The partnership began in the 1990’s with studies conducted by DCNR and The Conservation Fund. The project has advanced to protect almost 2,000 acres of land through transfer to the Lancaster County Conservancy. The properties are owned and managed by the Conservancy for the public benefit, and provide opportunities for hiking, fishing, hunting, bird watching, and education. Approximately 100 acres, including Pinnacle Overlook, will be transferred to DCNR to be included in Susquehannock State Park.
These land transfers support a regional Conservation Initiative developed by DCNR to conserve a greenway corridor of lands along the Lower Susquehanna River known as the Susquehanna Riverlands, which was recognized as an area worth of protection and enhancement for the public benefit. This initiative has received broad support from federal, state, and local agencies, as well as organizations, businesses, and individuals. It has been supported by millions of dollars in grants from DCNR, The Conservation Fund, Lancaster and York Counties, and private donors. As part of land transfers within the Susquehanna Riverlands, PPL Holtwood/Talen Energy is donating all proceeds from the grant-funded transfers into the Ralph H. Goodno restricted endowment fund which will be used to protect, promote, and manage the Riverlands.
“Just as a landmark conservation achievement such as this brings so much to so many, it never would have been possible without so many people bringing so much of their time and commitment to make it happen,” said DCNR secretary Cindy Adams Dunn. “We salute the efforts of Talen Energy, Brookfield Renewable Energy, Lancaster County Conservancy, and many other partners who worked so hard to enhance and protect the Susquehanna Riverlands for generations to come.”