Guide to Using Natural Resource Information

Natural resource information for local decision making

Planning, when done well, is among the most powerful tools available to communities. A solid plan, based on good natural resource information, guides rational land use decisions and allows communities to consider innovative tools for resource protection with fewer chances for legal challenges to their planning authority.

Natural resource-based planning is a process that puts the community's natural resource base at the forefront. By identifying natural resources at the beginning of the planning process, communities can determine where development is most appropriate. This way, communities can avoid the unintended consequences of the typical planning process, such as open space becoming the "leftover" pieces, water resources being degraded, and community character being compromised.

The guide

To learn more about natural resource-based planning, explore the:

The guide illustrates:

-Why natural resources are important
-How your community benefits from natural resources
-How to collect natural resource information
-How to use natural resource information to make environmentally sensitive and fiscally responsible local land use decisions
-Where to get natural resource information about your community

In addition, it includes many examples of how communities in Minnesota have used natural resource information to provide long term protection of their community's vital assets.

For a brief introduction to natural resource-based planning, check A Quick Guide to Using Natural Resource Information This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.

More Information

Want more? Here's a collection of other planning tools for local governments. This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.


For more information or to order the guide on CD ROM, contact:

Gina Bonsignore