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President's Record on Conservation Criticized

President Trump has weakened protections for 35 million acres of public land, despite repeating his intentions to surpass the model for conservation set by President Teddy Roosevelt.
May 27, 2020, 11am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Bears Ears National Monument
Bears Ears National Monument, one of the protected federal lands reduced since the Trump administration took office.
Nagel Photography

Throughout his time in office, surrogates for the president have proclaimed Trump's desire to surpass the model of Teddy Roosevelt for conservation, according to an article by Chris D’Angelo. Critics, however, say that the Trump administration has fallen far short of that example, and now there's data to back up that critique.

A new analysis from the Center for American Progress, detailed in a  separate article by Jenny Rowland-Shea and Zainab Mirza says President Trump has, in fact, thrown the presidency's bipartisan history of expansion of public lands. "President Trump is the only president in U.S. history to have removed more public lands than he protected," according to that article. 

The Center for American Progress calculates that over the past three years, the Trump administration has attempted to remove protections from nearly 35 million acres of public lands—approximately 1,000 times more land than his administration has protected. While the courts may overturn many of the Trump administration’s rollbacks, these actions equate to stripping protections from an area the size of Florida.

The article provides details of the scope of the Trump administration's anti-conservation efforts, all designed for the purpose, according to Rowland-She and Mirza, of giving the fossil fuel industry "unfettered access to public lands and waters."

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Published on Thursday, May 21, 2020 in Center for American Progress
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