Sentinel Landscapes in the Southeast
Increased population growth and development, inadequate planning, climate change impacts, and other incompatible land uses threaten the ability of military installations to carry out their mission. In response to these growing challenges, the U.S. Departments of Agriculture (USDA), Defense (DoD), and the Interior (DOI) established the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership to strengthen military readiness, conserve natural resources, bolster agricultural and forestry economies, and increase climate change resilience.
The SERPPAS Sentinel Landscapes in the Southeast Work Group connects currently designated landscapes to address shared challenges, share lessons learned, and promote the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership’s mission in the Southeast. The Work Group disseminates information to developing partnerships and serves as a regional coordinating body between currently designated and future Sentinel Landscapes partnerships.
Sentinel Landscapes benefit the military mission and the other partner missions by promoting compatible land use near military installations; strengthening the economies of forests and farms surrounding military bases; improving coordination between the military services, local governments, and state and federal agencies; and encouraging state interest and prioritization of resources supporting military installations and surrounding communities.
- Continue to refine a shareable composite mission footprint map of the Southeast to better understand the DoD priority areas across the region, utilizing existing and promoting continued local planning efforts to identify where new Sentinel Landscapes Partnerships would be most valuable.
- Focus on promoting private landowner interests and explore innovative ways to increase the number and type of compatible land use tools to offer landowners to conserve working lands and promote resilience where appropriate.
- Leverage the ‘Power of SERPPAS’ to attract both financial and non-financial support to increase awareness and capacity for the implementation of Sentinel Landscapes designated in the Region.
- Assess and integrate other SERPPAS focus area objectives into implementation strategies for Sentinel Landscapes in the region, to create more conservation opportunities that support working lands, natural resources and military missions.
- Assist Sentinel Landscapes in the Southeast assess their climate exposures and vulnerabilities and integrate resilience planning and adaptation into their landscape implementation plans.
- Use the SERPPAS network to share information, resources and lessons learned of the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership, as well as demonstrate the value and purpose of these partnerships.
Work Group Lead
Bruce BeardAssociate Director of Policy
Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute
Bruce Beard is the Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute’s Associate Director for Policy and leads NRI’s Military Land Sustainability Program. Bruce brings more than 30 years of federal land management and natural resource policy experience to NRI and is a nationally recognized advocate for Sentinel Landscapes.
Bruce served within the Executive Office of the President at the Office of Management and Budget in three Administrations, where he was a principal advisor on federal land management and natural resource policy issues. He was the OMB Branch Chief for the Interior Branch responsible for coordination of budget, legislation and regulatory issues affecting the Department of the Interior. At the Department of Defense, he was instrumental in establishing the Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) Program, which he directed, and helped to initiate the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership between the Departments of Agriculture, Defense and the Interior.
Bruce earned his Bachelor of Science in wildlife and fisheries from Texas A&M University, and a Master of Public Affairs in environmental policy from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs. He received the 2011 Outstanding Alumni Award from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M and the 2012 Secretary of Defense Medal for Meritorious Civilian Service at the Department of Defense.
Request to Join Work Group
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and NOAA announced $144 million in new grants to support natural infrastructure projects in 31 coastal states and U.S. territories. These grants will support design and implementation of projects to enhance the resilience of coastal communities and improve habitat for fish and wildlife across the U.S. The 109 grants announced today will generate more than $97 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $242 million.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) is soliciting proposals to voluntarily restore, enhance and conserve longleaf pine and bottomland hardwood forests within the historical longleaf pine range. The Longleaf Landscape Stewardship Fund is a funding opportunity for on-the-ground conservation projects. This RFP is a public-private partnership supported with Federal funding from USDA’s Forest Service (USFS) and Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), and private funding from Altria Group, International Paper’s Forestland Stewards Partnership and Southern Company. Approximately $30 million in grant funds is expected to be available in 2024, another program record funding level thanks to a second-year major contribution from the Bezos Earth Fund and increased funding from NRCS.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive
America’s Longleaf Restoration Initiative is thrilled to announce the release of the Range-wide Conservation Plan for Longleaf Pine (2025-2040)! This second iteration of the Conservation Plan guides the continued efforts to reach the goal of eight million acres of longleaf pine forest in the Southeast. While our strategies and objectives are updated for the next 15 years, the vision of America’s Longleaf remains unchanged – to have functional, viable longleaf pine ecosystems with the full spectrum of ecological, economic, and social values inspired through a voluntary partnership of concerned, motivated organizations and individuals.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive
On September 25, 2023, SERPPAS received the 2023 Climate Adaptation Leadership Award for Natural Resources from the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies! SERPPAS was recognized in the “Broad Partnership” category for demonstrating exemplary leadership in reducing climate-related threats and promoting adaptation of the nation’s natural resources.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive
USDA Announces Historic Investment in Wildlife Conservation, Expands Partnership to Include Additional Programs
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is announcing that it will expand its work on wildlife conservation by investing at least $500 million over the next five years and by leveraging all available conservation programs, including the Conservation Reserve Program, through its Working Lands for Wildlife effort.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive
In episode 189 of America Adapts, Doug Parsons attended the U.S. Department of Defense Climate Resilience Workshop in St. Louis, Missouri. The DoD extended an invitation to Doug to conduct interviews with key leaders within the DoD and their external partners who are actively involved in adaptation planning around military installations.Visit the SERPPAS News Archive