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The ECCA has devoted substantial attention to the subject of climate change, which is a very timely and serious subject with potentially far-reaching environmental consequesnces.
Hampered by COVID-19 restrictions and forced to conduct its activities through emails and zoom conferences for most of the past 15 months, the ECCA, nevertheless, achieved significant goals during this difficult period.
The ECCA’s 2020 annual magazine serves as an opportunity for our board to comment on the activities of our organization over the past year and to highlight challenges that we expect to face over the next twelve months.
The ECCA has been working hard on a number of issues in the
County that affect the quality of Essex residents. While the use of conservation easements to preserve open space lands and forests has been our primary focus since the ECCA’s inception in 2006, we have evolved to embrace other conservation issues
that are also critically important to the future of our citizens.
ECCA Works to Preserve, Protect, Retain and Enhance the Farms, Forests, Fisheries, Wildlife Habitat and Other Productive Natural Resources of Essex County on Virginia’s Middle Peninsula
Essex County’s budget shortfall has led to a call by some residents to eliminate land-use taxation in Essex. Every county in the Northern Neck and the Middle Peninsula has land-use taxation available to their residents, except for King and Queen and Mathews.
Essex County has made great progress in these last 8 years with our percentage of land under easement while we are delighted with this success, particularly relative to the other counties in the Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula. We have grown from under 4 percent in 2007 to 13 percent as of June 30, 2015.
Last year was a tumultuous one to the extent that a South Carolina developer tried to build a forty-six-slip marina at Fones Cliffs in Richmond County, and it became obvious the possibility of fracking in the Taylorsville Basin is closer to becoming a reality.
The year 2012 has seen the ECCA growing and evolving while upholding its mission to “promote and protect the rural character of Essex County–preserving farms, forests, natural, and historic resources–for the benefit of future generations.”
Much has been accomplished since September of 2006 when Andy Lacatell from The Nature Conservancy met at Wheatland with a small group of Essex County landowners looking for a fail safe way to protect the county’s farmland.