Ecological Benefits of the Conservation Reserve Program

Christopher P. Dunn, Forest Stearns, Glenn R. Guntenspergen, David M. Sharpe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


The Conservation Reserve Program was initiated in 1985 to reduce soil loss on highly erodible agricultural land. This stated objective of the program has been quite successful. However, there are other unintentional yet significant ecological benefits to the program that merit evaluation. These benefits include the reversal of landscape fragmentation, maintenance of regional biodiversity, creation of wildlife habitat, and favorable changes in regional carbon flux. These and other benefits should be used by policy makers and federal officials to maintain the program even after enrollment expectations have been achieved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-139
Number of pages8
JournalConservation Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1993


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