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Jun 3, 2021

The U.S. has been M.I.A. on many environmental issues for the last few years, but the new Biden Administration has been announcing positive policies regularly.

Among the most important is the “America The Beautiful” plan, laying out a vision for conserving 30% of its lands and waters by 2030, making it the latest country to release what’s called a 30×30 plan.

But is it enough? Despite a lack of specifics, many are celebrating renewed American leadership on this front, which can encourage other countries to get aboard the 30x30 bandwagon, in addition to other green policy objectives.

Joining us to discuss is Joe Walston, executive vice president of global conservation for the Wildlife Conservation Society--we talk about how the plan has been received, the most important details of the plan needing to be fleshed out, the important role of Indigenous people and farmers it advocates for, and why the U.S. joining the 30×30 movement could have sweeping global impacts.

Other conservation initiatives are also afoot that aim to make profound changes in the way Americans live on the planet. One is through agricultural solutions to the climate crisis, so we're also joined by science writer Sarah Derouin, who recently covered agroforestry programs in the U.S Midwest and Pennsylvania for Mongabay.

Derouin shares the goals and accomplishments of these programs, the vision of trees becoming integral to farming even in areas dominated by monocultures, and how agroforestry can factor into the U.S. meeting the 30×30 targets.

Articles discussed during this episode:

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Episode artwork: The Grand Tetons in Wyoming. Photo credit: Rhett A. Butler for Mongabay.
 
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