ANNAPOLIS — Maryland Environmental Trust (MET), a unit of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, is looking for volunteers who are passionate about land conservation to work in the field as Volunteer Land Stewards. Two virtual training classes are being offered in January and February.

As one of the nation’s oldest and most successful land trusts, MET has protected more than 135,000 acres with more than 1,110 conservation easements. Each conservation easement is protected forever and requires regular visits to monitor for compliance. MET relies on volunteers to serve as its eyes and ears on many of the protected properties throughout Maryland.

MET Volunteer Land Stewards visit conservation easements, talk with landowners, make observations, notes, and take photographs of the features of the easement. These visits help to build positive relations, promote good stewardship, and protect the conservation values of the land.

Volunteers attend a two-hour training session covering what is a conservation easement and our standard practices for monitoring and best environmental practices. The training includes practical exercises related to making a monitoring visit.

Due to COVID-19 precautions, training this year is virtual. Classes are being held:

Saturday, Jan. 16 — 10 a.m. to noon

Wednesday, Feb. 17 — 4 to 6 p.m.

Registration is available via online form. Interested volunteers should email met.info@maryland.gov for more information.

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