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An audacious and timely conservation challenge

We should all applaud President Biden’s executive order calling for conservation of 30% of the U.S. land base by 2030. This bold “30×30” vision is firmly rooted in science, given that protected land is key to a healthy and secure future for all Americans. It provides pure drinking water, healthy food, clean air, habitat for wildlife, and places for people to reflect, recreate, hunt and fish. Conserved land also provides protection from natural disasters, such as floods and droughts, and absorbs and keeps carbon from the Earth’s atmosphere.

The president’s vision also recognizes that land conservation is not keeping pace with growing threats to our lands, waters, wildlife and ways of life. Every 30 seconds, the United States loses a football field of natural lands to roads, houses, pipelines and other development. Since 1970, North America has lost 3 billion birds — 29% of its avian population. Forty acres of farmland in the United States are lost to development every hour.

Read more from Andrew Bowman with the Land Trust Alliance here.