Yesterday marked what would have been the 161st birthday of our nation’s foremost visionary in land and animal conservation, President Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt was ahead of his time when it came to the issues impacting our nation’s environment and the impacts of his policies are still felt today. In particular, Roosevelt understood the importance of leaving behind a beautiful world for his descendants.
Roosevelt famously said, “Of all the questions which can come before this nation, short of the actual preservation of its existence in a great war, there is none which compares in importance with the great central task of leaving this land even a better land for our descendants than it is for us.”
As we work to ensure vulnerable lands are conserved for future generations, Roosevelt’s example and guidance are top-of-mind. His dedication to conserving American lands and protecting vulnerable species resulted in the establishment of 150 national forests, 51 federal bird reserves, four national game preserves, five national parks and 18 national monuments during his presidency.
Roosevelt’s commitment to leaving a better world behind for his children was admirable and has inspired many of our nation’s top conservation organizations, including P4C. In order to leave behind the best planet possible, we must utilize all methods of conservation available to protect as much land and as many species as we can. That’s why we’re working to promote private conservation and encourage the protection of privately owned lands under conservation easements.
The conservation easement tax incentive has encouraged individuals to protect hundreds of thousands of acres of land that may not have otherwise been protected. Limiting this deduction would lead to less conserved land and less of an opportunity to leave behind a better world for our descendants. Theodore Roosevelt’s legacy is an example of the power of environmental stewardship and the conservation easement provides a key tool to steward a beautiful world for our descendants.