Alpine, TX – A new Center for Land Stewardship and Stakeholder Engagement has been established at the Borderlands Research Institute (BRI) at Sul Ross State University. The new center will facilitate conservation efforts in far West Texas by providing technical resources for landowners, energy developers, community members and conservation partners.
“We’re very pleased to launch the Center for Land Stewardship and Stakeholder Engagement here at the Sul Ross State University,” said Dr. Louis Harveson, who is the Dan Allen Hughes, Jr., BRI Endowed Director and professor of Wildlife Management at Sul Ross State University. “The new center will allow BRI to better meet our conservation mission by encouraging partnerships with other natural resource organizations, leveraging conservation cost-share programs, and enhancing our outreach efforts focused on land management projects in West Texas.”
The new center is funded in part by the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation and the Permian Basin Area Foundation, and is a direct result of the recommendations made through the Respect Big Bend initiative. Respect Big Bend’s mission is to inspire and empower stakeholders to conserve the unique resources and protect the iconic communities of the Big Bend region of Texas. Led by the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation, Respect Big Bend is a coalition of scientists, landowners, community leaders and industry who are committed to responsible energy development in West Texas.
The Center for Land Stewardship and Stakeholder Engagement will provide science-based guidance to land owners and land managers, enabling them to make informed decisions about minimizing developmental impacts while implementing mitigation and restoration activities. The center will also offer resources and technical guidance to area landowners and land managers to assist them in conservation and management goals. Finally, the center will serve as a conservation liaison and convener for principal conservation partners in order to maximize the effectiveness of various conservation initiatives in the region.
“The center is the direct result of the incredible efforts of the Respect Big Bend Stakeholder Advisory Group, which worked hard to define the critical values of the region that we all treasure,” said Billy Tarrant, who is Associate Director of Stewardship Services at BRI. “They emphasized the need for a lasting resource for stakeholders, and this new center will be a tangible and valuable resource for landowners that will be valued for years to come.”
More information about the new center can be found online at https://bri.sulross.edu/land-stewardship/.
Learn more about Respect Big Bend at respectbigbend.org
Since 2007, the Borderlands Research Institute has encouraged effective land stewardship of the Chihuahuan Desert. Housed at Sul Ross State University, the Borderlands Research Institute builds on a long-lasting partnership with private landowners, the university’s natural resource program, cooperating state, federal, and non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders. Through research, education, and outreach, the Borderlands Research Institute is helping to conserve the last frontier of Texas and the Southwest.