September 26, 2021

Conservation banking is a tool to conserve endangered, threatened, and other at-risk species and their habitat that reduces risks associated with the use of compensatory mitigation. Other benefits include:

  • Regulatory efficiencies for agencies, industry, project proponents, bank sponsors, and credit buyers
  • Increased transparency and predictability through advance planning at a landscape level
  • Greater economic incentives for conserving species that result in effective and sustainable conservation outcomes

This course is designed to foster collaboration among regulators, bank and other mitigation sponsors, and users - ensuring that all entities have a thorough grounding in conservation banking policy in order to facilitate the establishment of banks and in-lieu fee programs on the ground. In addition to addressing core elements of conservation banking establishment and implementation, this advanced course also covers in-lieu fee programs and other credit trading systems and concepts.

Course Objectives

  • Provide a thorough grounding in the relevant federal policy and regulations guiding the review, establishment, and operation of conservation banks and in-lieu fee programs
  • Enable participants to identify the need for and opportunities associated with conservation banking programs including economic benefits of third party compensatory offsets from both a bankers’ and users’ perspective
  • Provide practitioners and reviewers expertise on how conservation banks and in-lieu fee programs are effectively and efficiently reviewed and overseen in both their establishment and operation
  • Provide leadership and team building skills necessary to be an effective member of a conservation banking partnership and, for agency staff, an effective member of a Conservation Banking Review Team

Target Audience

A pre-determined number of slots are available to representatives of sponsoring agencies including: US Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS), NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service NMFS), Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), USDA Office of Environmental Markets (OEM), Department of Defense (DOD), US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and Bureau of Land Management (BLM), as well as representatives from state agency counterparts and other mitigation partners (by application, see below).

How To Register

Federal Agency Representatives:
Those interested in attending should contact their agency POC (see list below) once the course dates have been announced. POCs will fill their agency's slots from among the requests received and then submit their list of participants to course organizers.

Federal Agency Points of Contact:
State Agency Representatives and Other Mitigation Partners:
Representatives from state wildlife agencies and other mitigation partners are also welcome to apply to attend this course. State DOT representatives should contact the FHWA POC listed above. The application system will open once course dates have been announced. 

Course Details & Costs

Generally a 5-day (week-long), in-person course offered annually at the National Conservation Training Center (NCTC) in Shepherdstown, WV, the course is being modified to a virtual offering (half days over 2 weeks) during the pandemic. Thanks to the generous support from the sponsoring agencies, there is no tuition to attend this training.

Additional Information

For information about course logistics, please contact Margarita Carey (