The Maui Coastal Land Trust was established in 2001 to help connect government agencies with private landowners and community groups in an effort to protect Maui’s shorelines, coastal landscapes and cultural resources. Their mission is “to preserve and protect coastal lands in Maui Nui for the benefit of the natural environment and of current and future generations.” Land trusts work with landowners whom are interested in protecting open spaces and conserve lands by undertaking or assisting in land or conservation easement acquisitions. The land trusts commonly negotiate and utilize land easements which can limit any development potential and specifies what can and cannot be done on a property. Since 2001, Maui Coastal Land Trust has helped to conserve over 15,000 acres.
In 2011, Maui Coastal Land Trust merged with the Kauai Public Land Trust, the Oahu Land Trust, and the Hawaii Island Land Trust to form the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust.