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Ruckelshaus Institute

Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources

Forum in Conservation Finance: Creative Approaches to Sustain Wyoming's Land and Water

April 2-3, 2013, Casper, Wyoming

The need for creative solutions to fund long-term conservation has never been greater. Increasingly, new mechanisms to fund conservation will be required to leverage dollars. As we explore new conservation tools – conservation credits, mitigation banking, payment for ecosystem services, markets, and more – there is a growing need in Wyoming and beyond to better understand these options. This forum will build an informational foundation about a range of conservation finance tools, both established and emerging. Speakers will share real-world applications, success stories, and challenges using various conservation finance models in government and the private sector to inspire further practice of conservation finance in Wyoming. Wednesday, participants will tour a proposed mitigation bank on the Pathfinder Ranch near Alcova. 

Proceedings from the Forum on Conservation Finance: Creative Solutions to Sustain Land and Water, 2013


The April 2013 Wyoming Forum on Conservation Finance: Creative Approaches to Sustain Land and Water proceedings are now available online.

Learn why we need conservation finance, the basic tools and structures of conservation financing, and some of the emerging approaches to leverage private and public funds for conservation.





Agenda and Presentation Slides


Setting the Stage: Why We Need Conservation Finance

8:00 a.m.

Welcome, Purpose, and “What is conservation finance?”
Jason Shogren, Stroock Professor, Department of Economics and Finance, UW

8:10 a.m.

Conservation Finance and the Governor's Energy Strategy
Nephi Cole, Wyoming Governor's Office

View slides ->

8:30 a.m.

A Global View: Common themes, common issues
Kenneth Lay, former Treasurer of the World Bank, Senior Managing Director at the Rock Creek Group

The Basics: Conservation Finance Tools and Structures

9:00 a.m.

Conservation Finance for Everyone
Story Clark, Conservation Consultant

9:45 a.m.


10:00 a.m.

Wildlife Habitat Exchanges: Moving from practices to quantified outcomes
Sara Brodnax, Environmental Defense Fund

View slides ->

10:30 a.m.

Mitigation Banking and Credit Trading
Michael Fraley, Sweetwater River Conservancy

View slides ->

11:00 a.m.

Leveraging State Investment with Public Support
Bob Budd, Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust

11:30 a.m.

Local Conservation Finance: The Sheridan County Ballot Initiative
Brian Kuehl, Vela Environmental

View slides ->

Distinguished Speaker


Lunch provided

12:45 p.m.

Lunchtime keynote: Mark Gordon, Wyoming State Treasurer

Market-based Approaches to Conservation Finance

1:30 p.m.

Market Approaches to Water Management
Cory Toye, Trout Unlimited

View slides ->

2:00 p.m.

Lessons from Texas: The Golden-cheeked Warbler and the Dune Sagebrush Lizard
Brian Hays, Texas A&M Institute of Renewable Natural Resources

View slides ->

2:30 p.m.

The Upper Green River Conservation Exchange
Kristi Hansen, Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, UW

View slides ->

3:00 p.m.


Public-Private Partnerships: Lessons from Wyoming

3:30 p.m.

Panel Discussion

Natural Gas Mitigation in Southwest Wyoming (JIO-PAPO): Using private lands to offset impacts on public lands
Panelists: Holly Copeland, TNC; Matt Kauffman, USGS and UW; Don Simpson, BLM; Randy Teeuwen, energy industry
Moderator: Kristi Hansen, Agricultural and Applied Economics Department, UW

4:50 p.m.

Closing Remarks

5:00 p.m.


Wednesday, April 3

Field Trip

8:30 a.m.

Depart from Casper for Pathfinder Ranch

9:30 a.m.

Implementing Mitigation and Conservation Banks
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

10:45 a.m.

Field Tour of Proposed Mitigation Bank

11:30 a.m.


12:30 p.m.

Depart for Casper

1:30 p.m.

Return to Casper

Hosts and sponsors

The Forum on Conservation Finance was hosted by:

The Ruckelshaus Institute, supporting stakeholder-driven solutions to complex environmental and natural resources challenges by communicating relevant research and promoting collaborative decision making.

The Stroock Forum on Wyoming Lands and People, creating open dialogue between private citizens and public policy makers about the future of economic development and environmental quality in Wyoming and the West.

The Nature Conservancy, protecting the lands and waters that make Wyoming the place we love to play, work and live.

With sponsorship from:

Encana Oil and Gas (USA) Inc.

Sweetwater River Conservancy

If you have questions, feel free to contact the Ruckelshaus Institute at or (307) 766-5080.

Contact Us

Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources

Bim Kendall House

804 E Fremont St

Laramie, WY 82072

Phone: (307) 766-5080

Fax: (307) 766-5099


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