OSI Northeast Resilient Landscapes Initiative Fund

Open Space Institute

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Grant amount: Unspecified amount

Deadline: Rolling

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Project / Program

Location of project: Counties in Maine: Androscoggin County, Cumberland County, Oxford County, York County, Allegany County, Maryland Show all

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



OSI partners with conservation organizations in the Northeast to assemble networks of protected lands most likely to preserve plant and animal diversity in a changing climate. The Fund supports projects in four focus areas in New England, the mid-Atlantic, and the Central Appalachians offering the greatest opportunity to conserve missing links for resiliency in the overall landscape.

Grant Opportunities

The Fund provides capital grants and loans to qualified non-profits for the acquisition of land or conservation easements on climate-resilient lands, capitalized with a grant from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. Through an in-depth review process, we selected four focus areas in order to target funds most effectively. A fact brochure with maps for each focus area can be downloaded:

Potomac Headwaters – West Virginia & Virginia

Highlands and Kittatinny Ridge – New Jersey & Pennsylvania

Middle Connecticut River – Vermont & Massachusetts

Southern New Hampshire & Maine Forests 

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • To determine eligibility and assess a project’s resiliency attributes, applicants will use the newest data and produce maps with a new TNC Mapping Tool. The Definitions and Map Guide defines and explains resiliency concepts, details map requirements, and provides examples.
  • Projects must be in one of the four focus areas and meet all of the following Threshold Criteria:
    • Lie within an OSI Resilient Focus Area.
    • Rank above average for Landscape Resilience.
    • Achieve permanent protection of high resilience habitat through fee purchase of land or a conservation easement.
    • Meet or exceed OSI Conservation Easement Standards.
    • Be spearheaded by an organization with the capacity and financial ability to execute the transaction and ensure long-term stewardship and management of the property consistent with the Fund’s objectives.
    • Be completed within 18 months of receiving notification of OSI’s grant award.
  • Grants may be used to acquire permanent conservation easements and fee interest in land.
    • In exceptional cases, grants may be applied to cover transactional costs, including cost of appraisals, surveys, title, and environmental assessments.
    • The Fund may also provide short-term low-interest loans for projects that require bridge financing and that meet the grant criteria.
    • Grant funds cannot be used for endowments, stewardship costs, baseline documentation reports, staff time, buildings or other non-capital project expenses.


  • Projects that meet the Threshold Criteria will be evaluated based on the:
    • Extent of the property that ranks above average for Resilience.
    • Extent and type of Underrepresented Geophysical Settings found on the property.
    • Extent of the property that ranks above average for Landscape Diversity.
    • Extent, status and condition of plant and animal species and natural communities found on the property.
    • The project’s role in helping to ensure the long-term viability of plant and animal species, either alone or in conjunction with existing protected areas.
    • Threat and/or particular conservation opportunity presented.
    • Evidence of a stewardship plan for the long-term conservation of the property consistent with the Fund’s objectives.
    • Ability to meet OSI’s Match Requirements.
    • Applicant’s interest in and ability to advance the use of resiliency science.
    • Ability of the project to illustrate the importance of resilient landscape conservation and/or to catalyze other projects that will protect resilient habitat. Evidence that the land trust receiving funding from and/or holding property funded through a grant from the Fund is accredited by the Land Trust Commission or has a reasonable plan and timeframe for attaining accreditation that has been adopted by the land trust’s board.


  • Grant funds cannot be used for endowments, stewardship costs, baseline documentation reports, staff time, buildings or other non-capital project expenses.