BRAZORIA COUNTY, Texas – (Realty News Report) – Conservation Equity Management LP, an environmentally sustainable private equity firm led by Dallas investor Kyle Bass, has acquired 5,403 acres of pristine wetlands in Brazoria County as a sustainable and socially responsible investment.
Acquiring 37,000 Texas acres in recent months, the Conservation Equity fund is on the forefront of merging the worlds of conservation and finance as pension funds and institutions deploy assets to meet sustainability requirements for ESG (Environment, Social and Governance) goals.
The Brazoria County coastal land, called the Chocolate Bay Conservation parcel, will serve as a multi-use haven for ecologically focused projects on the Texas coast. From constructing wetlands to capturing carbon dioxide to enhancing threatened and endangered species habitat.
“This investment opportunity is extremely compelling due to the property’s high ecological value, the scarcity of remaining untouched resources for restoration, the project’s proximity to the Houston ship channel, and the industrial environmental damage that is being done,” said Kyle Bass, founder and CEO of CEM. “This is one of the most beautiful, pristine privately-owned wetlands projects remaining in Texas.”
Located in Brazoria County, approximately 45 minutes from downtown Houston and 20 minutes from Galveston Island, the property supports diverse coastal wetlands critical to the ecological health and economic stability of the Texas coast.
The Chocolate Bay parcel which includes 9.2 miles of frontage with local bayous and 2.3 miles of bay frontage is bordered to the east by The Chocolate Bay Preserve, a 4,714-acre tract recently acquired by the Galveston Bay Foundation with a mission to protect open space and natural habitat. Located immediately to the west across Chocolate Bay, lies the 44,414-acre Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge.
Texas-Sized Land Play: Bass Group Spent $90 Million to buy 37,000 Acres Since Last Year
Since it was founded last year, CEM has invested approximately $90 million to acquire approximately 37,000 acres across six projects in Texas.
The Chocolate Bay parcel is important for the Texas coastal environment. As urban development and land fragmentation continues along Texas’ coast, this trifecta of conservation-based properties will provide critical, uninterrupted habitat corridors for native and migratory wildlife species as well as buffer and protect inland areas from flooding events, the Bass organization said.
“This property is a unique, multiple-use conservation asset with excellent potential for generating ecological values sought after in the emerging world of sustainable investment and corporate environmental, social and governance commitments,” said Terry Anderson, founder and Principal of CEM.
Habitat Conservation Bank and a Carbon Capture Storage Facility
One of the most significant resources CEM has identified on the property is the pending 2,500-acre Frentress-Johnson Wetland Mitigation Bank, which CEM expects to be permitted by the end of this year. CEM intends to engineer, build, and permanently conserve one of the largest newly developed coastal wetlands in Texas. Additional components under development include a habitat conservation bank and a carbon capture and storage facility or a CCS.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, these CCS wells, also known as geologic sequestration, provide long-term underground storage for C02, reducing atmospheric emissions and mitigating climate change.
Under the direction of experienced ecologists, land management practices such as prescribed fire will be implemented to further augment biodiversity among flora and fauna. Additionally, a conservation-oriented grazing regime will be developed on appropriate portions of the property. Regenerative grazing, an ESG-recognized agricultural practice, not only improves soil health by managing livestock on perennial and annual forages, but supports human and ecosystem health, farm profitability and food-system resilience.
“Conservation Equity Management continues to evaluate additional ecosystem service uplift opportunities as sustainable investing markets continue to evolve,” Bass said.
Founded in 2021, Conservation Equity Management, LP is an environmental sustainability private equity firm based in Dallas and Nacogdoches, Texas. The CEM team has more than 30 years of experience identifying conservation and environmental mitigation assets while applying value-driven ecosystem enhancement techniques to capture step-up valuations.
Sept. 20, 2022 Realty News Report Copyright 2022
File: Bass Buys 5403 Acres South of Houston
Photo courtesy CEM
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File: Kyle Bass Buys 5403 Acres. CEM. EPA. Brazoria County. Westland. Chocolate Bay