CONSERVATION (Part 5 of 5)   Leave a comment

THE CONSERVATION MOVEMENT

EFFECTS OF GOOD CONSERVATION

  1. Good forestry prevents the depletion of timber and the siltation of streams.

  2. Wilderness areas provide shelter for wildlife and a place for people to relax.

  3. Reservoirs control floods, provide plentiful drinking water, and generate power.

  4. Properly ploughed and well-managed farms keep the soil fertile and in place.

  5. Land irrigated with water from diversion dams becomes suitable for crop raising.

  6. Well-planned industrial clusters utilize control devices to lessen pollution.

  7. Hatcheries provide fish to supplement stocks in reservoirs, streams, and lakes.

  8. Self-contained satellite communities maintain the beauty of natural terrain.

  9. Treatment plants help keep rivers clean by processing wastes from city sewers.

  10. Area-wide master plans for work and housing developments enhance city living.

  11. Underground express ways link cities and suburbs without destroying surface land.

  12. Expansive parks provide space and facilities for cultural and recreational activities.

  13. Mass interurban transportation systems move people and goods efficiently.

  14. Footpaths and bicycle trails offer opportunities for stimulating outdoor exercise.

  15. Green spaces established by city zoning hold soil and provide natural beauty.

  16. Rivers kept clean by effective pollution control can be used for recreation.

  17. Scenic easements along riverbanks aid anti-pollution efforts and help stem erosion.

Prepared by the U.S. Department of the Interior

Pinchot, Gifford (1865-1946), U.S. forestry expert, born in Simsbury, Conn.; studied forestry in Europe; president National Conservation Association 1910-25; active supporter of T. Roosevelt; negotiator of coal-strike settlement 1923; governor of Pennsylvania 1923-27, 1931-35.

Conservation in the United States began as a movement to save the country’s vanishing forests, but the concept was soon broadened to include other resources. Gifford Pinchot, the head of the United States Forest Service from 1898 to 1910, was an early conservationist. He strongly influenced President Theodore Roosevelt, who established the National Conservation Commission. Some 234 million acres (95 million hectares) of government-owned timber, coal, oil, and phosphate lands were set apart as public lands, never to be sold to private interests.

During President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first term, with a severe drought in the Plains states, reforestation and erosion control were undertaken by the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Soil Conservation Service. The government took over abandoned and non-productive farms; many acres were reforested and set aside as game reserves. The Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 regulated livestock grazing on public lands to prevent overgrazing and soil deterioration.

Under President Harry S. Truman a national program was established to control water pollution. Later legislation required states to set and enforce standards to maintain clean natural waters.

The Endangered Species Act of 1966 …

  • was one of the first laws passed in the United States intended to protect endangered animals.

  • provided for the publication of lists that name every endangered plant and animal.

  • was strengthened in 1969, when penalties were set for people who hurt endangered species.

  • was enhanced in 1973 when laws were established to protect animal habitats.

The Endangered Species Act has been a very important law because conservation groups can use it to prevent people from destroying the land that animals must have to live.

Efforts to save native wildlife from extinction were aided by management programs provided in the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966. Beginning in 1969 the importation of endangered species and the interstate shipment of illegally captured wildlife were prohibited. Thus the pet, fur, and hide markets for native and foreign species of potentially extinct animals were outlawed.

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1970, a far-reaching conservation measure, was supported by President Richard M. Nixon. It reflected the need for a high-quality environment, emphasized recycling of non-renewable resources, and advocated attempts to equalize population and resource use. In 1970 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was formed to establish standards of environmental quality.

Greenpeace Foundation, international organization for the protection of the environment.

An international organization, the Greenpeace Foundation, was established in 1971 to protect the quality of the Earth’s environment. Its special concerns include protesting against radioactive and toxic waste dumping, the use of nuclear weapons, and acid rain.

Watt, James Gaius (born 1938), U.S. executive and public official, born in Lusk, Wyo.; director U.S. Bureau of Outdoor Recreation 1972-75; member Federal Power Commission 1975-77; president and chief legal officer Mountain States Legal Foundation in Denver 1977-81; U.S. secretary of the interior 1981-83.

The worldwide recession of the early 1980s had an unfavourable effect on national conservation programs because environmental restrictions were viewed as hindrances to economic recovery. The controversial policies of President Ronald Reagan’s Secretary of the Interior, James Watt, who repeatedly favoured land development and exploitation over conservation, were widely opposed, and he resigned in 1983. Public opinion also forced other changes in the personnel and operation of the EPA.

In 1984 Reagan rejected a bill to establish an American Conservation Corps, similar to the Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930s. However, he supported bills to expand the federal wilderness preservation system by more than 8 million acres (3.2 million hectares).

In 1990, under President George Bush’s administration, legislation was passed that amended the Clean Air Act of 1970 to focus more on reducing acid rain, emissions from fossil fuel burning, and nitrogen oxide emissions. Also passed were a number of new automobile pollution controls, such as stricter tail-pipe emissions standards and installation of vapour-recovery nozzles at gasoline pumps. Also part of Bush’s policies were new legislation to strengthen controls of chemicals that destroy the ozone layer and plans to study radon and other indoor air pollution problems.

Assisted by Herbert A. Smith, Associate Dean for Education, Colorado State University. Also reviewed by J. Whitfield Gibbons, Senior Research Ecologist, Professor of Zoology, Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, University of Georgia.

BIBLIOGRAPHY FOR CONSERVATION

Baker, Mark and others. The World Environment Handbook (World Environment Center, 1985).

Bittinger, Gayle. Learning and Caring About Our World (Warren, 1990).

Boy Scouts of America. Conservation Skill Book (BSA, 1979).

Curtis, Will. The Nature of Things (Ecco Press, 1988).

Durrell, Lee. State of the Ark (Doubleday, 1986).

Gates, Richard. Conservation (Childrens, 1982).

Graphic Learning International Staff. Concise Earthbook (Graphic Learning, 1987).

Long, R.E., ed. Energy and Conservation (Wilson, 1989).

Middleton, Nick. Atlas of Environmental Issues (Facts on File, 1989).

Owen, O.S. and Chiras, D.D. Natural Resource Conservation: An Ecological Approach, 5th ed. (Macmillan, 1990).

Prescott-Allen, Robert. How to Save the World: Strategy for World Conservation (Littlefield, Adams, 1981).

Schwartz, Linda. Earth Book for Kids: Activities to Help Heal the Environment (Learning Works, 1990).

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Posted 2011/12/21 by Stelios in Education

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