Every day we lose more than 4,000 acres of land to development, according to National Resources Inventory data (1982 to 2012). Orchards, farms and meadows are being converted to shopping malls. Wetlands are filled and developed into office parks.
This loss of our land is not happening by accident. For many decades, our country has created tax laws, zoning and transportation policy that fuel rapid, sprawling development of natural areas. Typical building patterns in America drive us further and further from the center of our communities as we carve up increasingly distant fields and forests.
The U.S. population is projected to grow by 100 million and the amount of land covered with housing, roads and shopping malls will nearly triple by 2050. More than 80% of our population will live in metropolitan areas where open space will be increasingly precious. The places we have counted upon for generations are disappearing, but we’re taking action.
The Land Trust Alliance is advocating for the policies and incentives that it takes to save millions of acres every year. We’re the go-to source for training for people who work in conservation — so land trusts get more done. And we back up land trusts when the places they promise to protect are threatened.