Protect Your Land


Gravel Pits  • Subdivisions • Bad Forestry
& Dramatically Lower Your Taxes

Two Methods for Protecting Your Land

Conservation Agreement

A Conservation Agreement allows a landowner to agree (and compel future landowners to agree) to restrict development like severances, additional houses, gravel extraction, excessive tree cutting and even the use of yard lights which obliterate the stars. Every landowner creates a personalized list of restrictions and receives an income tax receipt for a significant fraction of the land (not the buildings). It will then be EBC’s responsibility to ensure future owners follow your rules.

Severances and Donated Land

Landowners can place their land into a nature reserve by donating or selling the property at a reduced rate. EBC is able to sever off the wetland or forest while leaving the house and other lands with the owner. Any land donated receives a tax receipt, while the owner saves capital gain taxes and real estate fees. The benefit usually ranges from 60% to 97% of the value of a sale.

EBC will bear the costs of administering your donation.


Conservation Agreements

You can agree to restrict uses  on your own land ... forever

By establishing covenants like:          

(you choose, not us)

  • No commercial gravel
  • No land severances 
  • No more houses
  • No hunting
  • No bad forestry 
  • Perhaps organic farming
  • Etc, etc

and agreeing to easements like:

  • Occasional inspections
  • Fixing serious problems


A great estate planning tool for:

  • giving the land to your kids (without taxes)
  • knowing your land will be safe


Contact Us for More Info

Deeding Your Land

You can donate ... some or all ... of your land.

We arrange the severance (if required) and, in most cases, the property can continue to be used and enjoyed.


Your trees, plants and animals: protected.

We generate and deliver your tax receipt, which affects Income, Capital Gain and Estate taxes.

Trees and Sky


Contact Us for More Info

Save Income Tax

Whether you choose a Conservation Agreement or Deeding your Land, we will gladly arrange government approvals. In return you get:

  • An income tax receipt
    • Valued at 20-80% of LAND value (Conservation Agreement)    
    • Valued at 100% of land value (Deeding your Land)
  • Capital gain exemption
  • No questions from CRA
  • 10 years to use the receipt

Learn from the video on the right the value of a Conservation Agreement:

Producer and Cinematographer: Barry F.G. Smith, CANAVISION Inc. 2011

Creating Your Nature Reserve

Step 1

Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy will meet with you, walk your property and have a general discussion about:

  • Ecological sensitivity of your property
  • Conservation approaches i.e. agreement (covenants and easements), ownership, life estate, bequest, partial taking, bargain sales
  • Approximate values
  • The probable tax impact (property, capital gain, and income)
  • The time to complete such a project

The volunteers and staff at EBC are not professional appraisers, accountants, lawyers, or planners. Nor do they have a crystal ball. EBC’s discussion will cite previous examples and ranges but should be taken neither as a fact nor good advice. Professional appraisers, planners, surveyors are employed where required and the owner should consult their own financial and legal advisors for independent advice. EBC will be pleased to provide you with the names of previous donors who can discuss the process.

Step 2 – Working out the Broad Design

During this stage, the concept will be firmed up:

  • Land (fee simple) vs. conservation agreement
  • Determine the extent of the gift vs. purchase
  • Determine zone boundaries
  • Wording of the conservation or life estate agreement

Note: The owner should consult with their family and advisors on the concept and the details developed to confirm that the project meets their objectives. The owner is expected to advise EBC if the project is in question before EBC spends money to finalize details in the following stages, (unless the estimates developed to date are substantially incorrect or the owner’s situation changes dramatically).

Step 3 – Checking the Impact

At this point, experts will be brought in to assess the values, confirm the wording is effective and review the planning impact:

  • Have a qualified appraiser estimate the value
  • Get lawyers to approve the wording
  • Consult with financial planners on tax applications
  • Order a survey if required

Here the owner should question any outstanding details or conclusions, confirm details of the project with their financial and legal advisors and confirm that the family understands the agreement.

Step 4 – Government Approvals

During this stage, EBC will work on getting government approvals from Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) and the municipality if a severance application is required. 

Step 5 – Register the Transfer

Once government approvals are received, the transfer is then registered. 

Step 6 – Tax Receipts

At this stage, EBC will issue tax receipts to the donor(s) which can be used over the course of 10 years as opposed to the regular 5 year period.

Step 7 – Monitoring & Stewardship

Once the donation is completed, the property will be monitored to ensure the terms of the agreement are being followed or in the case of fee simple, the property will be stewarded by EBC staff and/or volunteers.