1. Place where an organism or population (e.g., humans, animals, plants, microorganisms) normally occurs and is adapted to, often characterized by a dominant plant form and/or physical characteristic.
Habitat Diversification
  1. The process by which a forested landscape is broken into a mosaic of serial or succession stages of vegetative types, through management practices and/or natural processes. [source: DCNR State Forestry Resource Management Plan, Glossary of Terms:]
Hazardous Sites Cleanup Act (HSCA )
  1. The Hazardous Sites Cleanup Act (HSCA ) provides the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) with the funding and the authority to conduct cleanup actions at sites where hazardous substances have been released. HSCA also provides DEP with enforcement authorities to force the persons who are responsible for releases of hazardous substances to conduct cleanup actions or to repay public funds spent on a DEP funded cleanup action. HSCA funds are also used to pay the state share of costs of cleanup actions at Pennsylvania sites in the Federal Superfund Program. Under the provisions of HSCA, most HSCA sites involve bankrupt facility owners, abandoned facilities, and inappropriate disposal of hazardous substances. As a general rule, HSCA sites do not include active facilities with financially viable owners. [source:]
Highest and Best Use
  1. The reasonably probable and legal use of vacant land or an improved property, which is physically possible, appropriately supported, financially feasible, and that results in the highest value. The four criteria the highest and best use must meet are legal permissibility, physical possibility, financial feasibility, and maximum productivity. [Source: Appraisal Institute dictionary]
  2. Highest and best use is a concept in real estate appraisal. It states that the value of a property is directly related to the use of that property; the highest and best use is the reasonably probable use that produces the highest property value. The highest and best use may or may not be the current use of the property. In order to be considered as the highest and best use of a property. The exact definition of highest and best use vary, but generally the use must be: legally allowable, physically possible, financially feasible, and maximally productive (profitable). [Source: Wikipedia]
Historic Preservation Easement
  1. A conservation easement used to preserve the façade, interior, or surroundings of a historic structure. These easements require preservation of the essential character of the building while permitting changes that are necessary to ensure that the building is maintained and remains economically viable over time. [Source: West Virginia LandTrust, Frequently Used Terms:]
  1. The party who receives title to real property (buyer, recipient, donee) from the seller (grantor) by grant deed or quit claim deed. Also known as a grantee.
Hold Harmless Provision
  1. In conservation easement work: The conservation easement provision that ensures that liabilities of landownership are not transferred to the easement holder. [Source: Elizabeth Byers and Karin Marchetti Ponti, The Conservation Easement Handbook, Published by the Trust for Public Land and the Land Trust Alliance, 2005.]
Hydraulic Fracturing
  1. The process used to extract natural gas from rock formations where the gas is trapped in small bubbles or pores in the formation. Millions of gallons of water, sand and chemicals are injected at high pressure into the formation, causing it to fracture and release the gas. The fractures are held open by the sand.