Land Preservation

SJLWT works to preserve and protect farmland, open space and critical habitats within South Jersey. In addition, SJLWT assist land owners and municipalities in the farmland and open space preservation process.


"Sprawl development spreads housing and jobs over large land areas, consuming forests and farmland six times faster than the population growth rate. According to the Regional Plan Association, population in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area grew by only 2 % between 1970 and 1995, yet we lost 30% of our fields and forests. Since 1950 New Jersey has lost more than half its farmland-nearly 1 million acres. And the number of farms has dropped by two-thirds, from 26,900 in 1950 to 9,000 in 1995" (excerpt Open Space is a Good Investment, ANJEC Resource Paper).


1. Land preservation is a key component in planning and directing development that may otherwise contribute to increased public spending on services and subsequent tax increases:

  • Studies show for every $1 collected in property taxes, residential development costs $1.04 to $1.67 in services
  • Studies show that planned growth saves 25% in road costs, 15 % in water and sewer costs, while consuming 43.5% less land.
  • Commercial and light industrial ratables have also been shown to have unforeseen costs due to factors including influx of residential development, increased traffic and road services, lowering of surrounding property values, and other complex factors.

2. Land preservation has been shown to increase property values in areas adjacent to or in close proximity to open space, providing for higher tax ratables from those properties.

3. Land Preservation encourages economic benefits of eco-tourism activities such as bird- watching, hunting and other outdoor recreation activities (NJ Div. of Fish and Wildlife handout).


1. Provides for greater recharge of surface groundwater and deep groundwater aquifers due to increased rates of infiltration into soils;

2. Provides for wildlife habitat which supports populations of migratory songbirds, various threatened and endangered plants and animals, native vegetation and endemic species;

3. Helps to lessen air and water pollution through absorption of contaminants, and

4. Provides for the overall well being of the community and all of its residents.


1. NJ DEP Green Acres Programs

  • State acquisition for NJDEP Fish and Wildlife/Wildlife Management Areas
  • State acquisition for State Parks and Forestry
  • State acquisition for NJ Natural Lands Trust
  • Green Acres Planning Incentive Grant Program for Counties and Municipalities
  • Green Acres Individual Project Grants for Counties and Municipalities
  • Green Acres Nonprofit Program

2. NJ State Farmland Preservation Program/SADC

  • State direct easement purchase
  • State direct fee purchase
  • State/County easement purchase
  • County/Municipal Planning Incentive Grants
  • Nonprofit Program

3. County Open Space and Farmland Preservation Programs/County Preservation Trust Funds

  • County Acquisition of Open Space or Farmland Easements
  • County Funding of Municipal Open Space Acquisitions
  • County Assistance with Nonprofit Acquisitions

4. Municipal Acquisition

  • Combined Municipal Preservation Trust Funds or Bonds/County/Green Acres/Nonprofit
  • Combined Municipal Preservation Trust Funds or Bonds/County/SADC/Nonprofit

5. Nonprofit Role

  • SADC Nonprofit Program (50% match)
  • Green Acres Nonprofit Program (50% match)
  • Foundation Grants
  • NJ DEP Natural Resource Damages Fund
  • Other grants programs, i.e. Federal Fish and Wildlife Service, Federal Farm and Ranchland

Contact Information:

1. State Contacts:

  • NJDEP Green Acres Program, 609-984-0500
  • NJ Farmland Preservation, 609-984-2504

2. County Contacts:

  • Salem, Kris Alexander: Farmland Preservation Coordinator, 856-769-3708
  • Gloucester, Ken Atkinson, Farmland, and Vicki Snyder, Open Space, 856-307-6450,
    Ext 8
  • Cumberland, Matt Pisarski, Farmland Preservation Coordinator, 856-453-2175
  • Camden, Jack Sworaski, Open Space/Farmland Coordinator, 856-858-5211
  • Atlantic, Open Space/Farmland Coordinator, 609-645-5898
  • Cape May, Barbara Earnst, 609-465-1086

3. Nonprofits:

  • New Jersey Conservation Foundation, Main Office- 908-234-1225, South Jersey contacts- Chris Jage, 856-767-2632 and Janet Eisenhauer, 856-589-4317/Active State-wide
  • Natural Lands Trust, Steve Eisenhauer, 856-825-9952/Active in Salem and Cumberland County
  • South Jersey Land & Water Trust (formerly the Federation of Gloucester County Watersheds and the South Jersey Land Trust), Janet Eisenhauer, 856-589-2049/Active Southern NJ
  • Old Pine Farm Natural Lands Trust, Big Timber Creek, Joan Tracy, 856-227-5723/Active Big Timber Creek, Deptford
  • The Nature Conservancy, Delaware Bay Shore Office, 609-861-0600/Special Project Areas


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Land Preservation
Preserved Properties
Preservation Methods
Steps in Preserving Land
  Stopping Sprawl
  Municipal Assistance Program
What's my Watershed?
Watersheds By County

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