Connecticut Land Conservation Conference

March 23, 2024, Wesleyan University

Usdan Center, 45 Wyllys Avenue, Middletown

Home > Conference > Tools for Protecting and Restoring Riparian Areas — Rivers’ Natural Protection


Tools for Protecting and Restoring Riparian Areas — Rivers’ Natural Protection

Room: TBD
Intro Level, Intermediate Level, Advanced Level

This workshop focuses on riparian (streamside) buffers, and is a collaboration between the UConn Center for Land Use Education and Research (CLEAR), the CT River Gateway Commission, and the Rivers Alliance of CT. After a brief review of the value and functions of riparian areas, we will describe the statewide status of riparian zones as indicated by analysis of high resolution land cover data, and assess the health of the state’s small watersheds as indicated by CLEAR’s new Local Watershed Assessment Tool. We will then switch gears to protection and regulation strategies, first reviewing recent analyses of zoning regulations, statewide. An in-depth case study of the Gateway Zone and its challenges and strategies regarding riparian zones will follow. Finally, we will give an update on statewide legislative initiatives focused on riparian protection. Ample time will be reserved for discussion. The workshop is suitable for a broad audience including land trusts, conservation commissions, and land use professionals, providing actionable insights for enhancing watershed health through regulation and community education.


Chet Arnold, Extension Educator Emeritus, UConn

Alicea Charamut, Executive Director, Rivers Alliance of CT

David Dickson, Director, UConn CLEAR

Zbig Grabowski, Water Quality Educator, UConn CLEAR

Alan Ponanski, Chair, Rules Committee, CT River Gateway Commission

Resources and Handouts

Clcc Handclap

“CLCC’s annual conference is like Woodstock for Connecticut’s land conservation community. It’s an opportunity to foster connections, get inspired, and celebrate our collective accomplishments”

- Pete Govert, Executive Director, East Haddam Land Trust

Previous Conferences

Interested in reading about past conferences? Check out past years' conference wrap-ups…