Founded in 2008 as a private nonprofit 501(c)(3) land trust, the Marin Open Space Trust (MOST) mission is to permanently preserve Marin County’s unprotected open space lands.
Although thousands of acres in Marin have been protected, more than 15,000 acres of significant lands remain at risk of development. These unprotected properties, mostly in the county’s eastern urbanized corridor, are important for close-to-home recreational opportunities, scenic viewsheds, watershed protection, and wildlife corridors.
MOST preserves land by:
- Mobilizing quickly to respond to preservation opportunities and work with landowners
- Purchasing and receiving donations of land and conservation easements
- Raising funds for open space protection
- Working collaboratively with parks agencies, especially Marin County Parks, and other local land preservation organizations to support their land protection goals.
- Raising community awareness about the importance of protecting critical properties.
Since its founding, MOST has completed nine land protection projects, including three conservation easements acquisitions and six land acquisitions. The easement properties remain in private ownership and the land acquisitions, now public parks, are managed by Marin County Parks and the City of San Rafael.
As of 2015, more than 1,300 land trusts operate across the United States—they have cumulatively protected 56 million acres of land! Nearly 17 million of these acres are protected by conservation easements. For more information about conservation easements click here. The top conservation priorities of the nation’s land trusts include preserving natural areas and wildlife habitats, and protecting water quality, wetlands, and working farms and ranchlands.