logo

Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

Real news for working families.  An online newspaper

Florida

Conservation: Chance for Bipartisan Action, Healing

TALLAHASSEE, FL – With the dust beginning to settle on election 2016, conservation groups say now is the time to get to work on what should be a nonpartisan issue: protecting natural resources in Florida and nationwide. 

Ron Warnken, a regional representative for the National Wildlife Federation, says Florida's land, water, and wildlife always have been the big draw for tourists and residents alike, and that's why he believes all Floridians should be able to get behind the idea of protecting them.

"And I think that is what has made Florida's economy vibrant," he states. "And it's really critical - mission critical - that we care for and conserve those natural resources moving into the future."

Locally, Warnken points to the success of parks and recreation conservation efforts in the state. For example, last week voters in north central Florida approved the Wild Spaces and Public Places initiative by a large margin, a half-cent increase of the sales tax there to rejuvenate the county's conservation efforts.

Collin O'Mara, the National Wildlife Federation's president and CEO, says there always are hurdles to overcome when it comes to policy, but he maintains there are opportunities to show that environmental laws, including the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act, are not at odds with economic growth.

"If we can show that investments in natural resources, investments in infrastructure will help put people to work, help strengthen the economy, help create outdoor opportunities, help save the wildlife and natural resources that we love we can hopefully begin to instill a little bit confidence that we can do big things again in this country," he stresses.

O'Mara does note that the political divide on climate change is a significant one, but he still believes there are ways both parties can work together to benefit the environment and the economy.

Images/links added by the Observer

This piece was reprinted by the Columbia County Observer with permission or license. It may not be reproduced in any form without permission or license from the source.

Comments  (to add a comment go here) 

Meeting Calendar
No need to be confused - Find links to agendas and where your participation is welcome.
 
 

Make a comment • click here •
All comments are displayed at the end of the article and are moderated.