Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Growing Greener Coalition: 93% Of Pennsylvanians Say We Have A Moral Obligation To Care For Our Environment - Don’t Cut Dedicated Funding

On November 18, the Growing Greener Coalition wrote this open letter to members of the Senate and House and Gov. Wolf urging them to oppose efforts to cut dedicated recreation and conservation funding to fill state budget holes--

93 percent of Pennsylvanians agree—68 percent strongly—that “we have a moral obligation to take care of our environment.” 
Read more here.
Whether the focus is protecting waterways, protecting wildlife and natural areas, the importance of parks and open spaces, or preserving productive farms, overwhelming supermajorities of Pennsylvanians find these environmental matters “very important.” 

These feelings cross party lines; for example, “protecting PA’s drinking water” is found to be very important by 75 percent of Republicans, 84 percent of Independents, and 92 percent of Democrats.

Moreover, 9 in 10 voters agree that even with the present tight budget, we should still find the money to invest in protecting Pennsylvania's land, water and wildlife (87 percent agree), that protecting water quality and land in Pennsylvania is critical to keeping the state's economy strong (90 percent agree), and that it is more important to have parks, preserves, and other public spaces where we can safely enjoy the outdoors (91 percent agree). 

Notably, there is substantial intensity behind these attitudes, as broad majorities report strongly agreeing with each sentiment.

The numbers demonstrate that Pennsylvanians care deeply about the environment and want to ensure that state investments in projects that support our parks and public open spaces, protect water and wildlife, and provide other environmental benefits continue—no matter the present crisis.

In addition to being strongly supported by the public, investing in Pennsylvania’s environment makes strong fiscal sense. 

It is well established that state environmental investments provide tremendous rates of return—whether the measure is job creation and economic activity, costs avoided (such as public health and flooding), net tax revenues, or the wellbeing of people and communities.

The widely acclaimed Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund and Environmental Stewardship Fund are proven vehicles for making environmental investments and keeping Pennsylvania communities great places to live, work, and play. 

Good for the environment, good for the economy, it is more important than ever to keep Keystone and ESF investments flowing. 

With pandemic-driven fundamental shifts underway in the economy and businesses and skilled workers looking more than ever at quality of life in making location decisions, the General Assembly should be considering how it might increase investments through these time-tested funds.

For more information, please reach out to the people and organizations of the Coalition including but not limited to:

Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Conservation Voters of PA

Ducks Unlimited

Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds

Lancaster Farmland Trust

Natural Lands

PennFuture (Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future)

Pennsylvania Environmental Council

Pennsylvania Parks And Forests Foundation

Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society

Sierra Club PA Chapter

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy

The Conservation Fund

The Nature Conservancy, PA Chapter

The Trust for Public Land


Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

Click Here for a copy of the letter.

For more information, visit the Growing Green Coalition website.

Contact Your Legislator

Click Here to find your House and Senate member and let them know how you feel.


How To Survive COVID Winter?  Parks Are Open Year-Round.  Get Out And Enjoy Nature

Related Articles This Week:

-- Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership: 3 Reasons PA Officials Should Not Drain Conservation Funds To Balance The Budget - Act Now

-- PA Federation Of Sportsmen & Conservationists: Protect Dedicated State Funds Critical To Improve Habitat, Protect Wildlife In PA 

-- Growing Greener Coalition Urges General Assembly, Governor To Reject Any Budget Proposal That Undermines Dedicated Funding For Community-Driven Conservation Projects

-- PA Environmental Council: Protect Investment In Outdoor Recreation And Public Lands

-- CBF: Raiding Dedicated Conservation Funds To Plug The State's Budget Gap Would Further Damage PA's Environment

-- -- PA Parks & Forests Foundation Opposes Any Effort To Cut Dedicated Funds To Support State Park, Forest, Recreation Projects

-- WeConservePA: State Conservation Funding Commitments Deliver Economic Benefits

Related Articles - Budget:

-- New Poll Shows 90% Of PA Voters Want Senate, House Members To Address Environmental, Conservation Priorities, Provide More Funding For Critical Programs

-- PA Farm Bureau, 45 Other Hunting, Angler, Business, Environmental, Watershed Groups Urge Senate, House To Pass On-Farm Conservation Funding Bill This Year

-- PA Conservation Districts Ask Lawmakers To Keep Same Funding For Their Vital Services As They Finalize FY 2020-21 State Budget

-- State Parks Continue To Break Visitor Records In September: 4.7 Million Visitors, Up 31 percent Over Last Year

-- State, Regional, Local Outdoor Recreation ‘Through The Roof’ Across Pennsylvania

-- Op-Ed: Now Is The Time To Invest In Parks, Not Cut Them

-- Analysis: 2020 Is A Make Or Break Year For Environmental Funding

-- House Speaker Cutler: Republicans Will First Raid Dedicated Funds To Balance Budget In November

-- House Republicans Pass Bill To Freeze Funding For County Conservation Districts, Local Parks, Farm Conservation, Watershed Restoration Projects; Will Hurt Local Economies

-- House Republicans Moving Bill To Reallocate Keystone Fund, Damage Vitality Of PA’s Outdoor Economy

-- Analysis: Why Republican Freeze On Funding For Local Parks, Trails, Farm Conservation, Mine Reclamation, Recycling Is Bad For The Economy, Communities, The Environment

-- Senate Environmental Committee Puts Spotlight On Funding Needed To Implement PA Clean Water Plan At Chesapeake Bay Briefing

[Posted: November 18, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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