A new statewide land conservancy has been created through the merger of the four main land trusts which currently cover individually all counties of Hawai’i. The four organizations, which include Kauai Public Land Trust, Oahu Land Trust, Maui Coastal Land Trust and Hawai’i Island Land Trust, made the official decision in June 2010 to merge following a collaborative process that began in early 2009. The merger became official on January 1, 2011.
For more than two decades, local land trusts have been working to protect some of Hawaii’s most important natural and cultural treasures. These groups have engaged volunteers, motivated major donors, hired professional staff, and actively worked with local, state, and national partners to successfully preserve over 15,000 acres of coastal areas, working ranches and agricultural lands, wildlife habitats, watersheds, park/recreation areas, and Hawaiian cultural sites. In addition, the new organization has assumed national accreditation status since Maui Coastal Land Trust has already receive accreditation, the youngest land trust in the nation to do so.
Many places important to the people of Hawai’i have already been lost forever. The work of preserving our remaining island treasures is critical to us all. The Hawaiian Islands Land Trust represents a dynamic new statewide organization with the breadth, talent, and vision to both grow and manage state land conservation in perpetuity.