Do you own a cave and aren't sure what to do with it? We can help!
People have finally realized the important cultural and scientific value of caves, including habitat for very rare and endangered bats, shelter locations of historical significance, and habitat for microbes that may be beneficial for future medicine.
Caves can also affect you personally, as they help drain vast areas of land by transporting ground water great distances. Trash dumped around cave entrances can release chemicals into the water system, affecting water sources many miles away. Some landowners have been surprised by land collapse when they attempt to bulldoze their property.
Many landowners are stymied by their caves, and see them as a major liability. Other land owners want to be good stewards of their cave, but aren't sure how to take care of it.
The Northeastern Cave Conservancy may be able to help:
- Donation of Property - The Northeastern Cave Conservancy is a 501(c)-3 tax exempt organization. Property donations can provide you with a significant tax savings.
- Conservation Easement - A conservation easement is a binding legal agreement between the land owner and the conservancy. It permanently restricts the use of the land in order to promote conservation. In exchange, the landowner can gain a tax advantage. No public access is required, and the owner can continue to own the land, pass it on to heirs, or sell it. The conservation restrictions stay with the property. Each easement is different, and is specifically tailored to the property. The Land Trust Alliance has a nice website explaining conservation easements.
- Purchase - The Northeastern Cave Conservancy also purchases significant cave properties. Please look at our selection criteria on our cave preserve page.
- Management Plan - The NCC can survey your cave, and tell you where it runs under the land, and more importantly, where it doesn't! We can evaluate your cave and help develop a cave management plan. This will let you know what your resources are, and will give you suggestions on how to take care of them.
Benefits of NCC Acquisition of your cave property:
- Conservation of the land - The land will remain forever wild. It will remain aesthetically pleasing and water supplies, wildlife, etc. will benefit. The owner will have the satisfaction of knowing a unique natural resource has been saved for future generations. (A new cave preserve could be named after a donor.)
- Removal of Potential Liability - If the cave entrance is a hazard, the landowner will no longer need to be bothered with building and maintaining fences and gates, posting the property, face potential liability problems, and special insurance surcharges.
- Cave Management - The NCC will assume responsibility for managing access to the cave. The landowner need no longer be bothered with access issues, waivers, etc.