If we snooze, we'll lose our right to ride!
The Biden Administration's pledge to conserve 30% of America's land and waterways by 2030 is undoubtedly one of the biggest and strongest environmental acts in recent history that could severely impact motorized recreation. ASA Social Media Manager and land use advocate Del Albright walks us through what this means and what we need to do.
Known as the America the Beautiful Plan, America the Beautiful, or 30x30, this effort will supposedly protect biodiversity, head off some mass extinctions, and help prevent the economic disasters predicted by some scientists associated with climate change. But, as with most media-enhanced programs, this is couched in "climate fix" and global warming.
It's hard to argue with that wording. But unfortunately, corporate environmentalism has always found the best emotional language to sell a cause! It's about saving the world. They have been proven right in a few cases, but in others, it is just a money-building scam!
While we may not want to argue with the wording and goals, we must be at the table where the argument occurs to have our voices heard.
Motorized recreation must be part of the discussions and solutions to changes in the American landscape and public land access.
Environmental groups rave over the 30x30 purposes and possible long-range changes to our world. Some say it's nice but not enough. The new catchphrase could be 50% by 2050.
Given that there are already national parks, military bases, wilderness areas, and so on, the only land left to take is what we ride on. In the plans we have seen, OHV areas are up for grabs, not already "protected" under 30x30!
The ASA does not want to become known as a "Chicken Little" where the sky is falling, but it really is.
The threat is real; it is now. CLICK HERE to learn about it.
Now is when we should act. Unfortunately, it will be too late once the lands are closed.
4-Step Call to Action
Do your part to ensure "they" hear our motorized voice by joining every organized recreation group that makes sense to you, so we have the resources (and numbers) to be a significant voice in 30x30. Join the off-road advocacy group of your choice. For Glamis (the Imperial Sand Dunes), the American Sand Association has taken the lead for almost a quarter of a century and won back 40,000 acres.
CLICK HERE to join the ASA.
Take a few minutes and cruise the internet for more info to increase your understanding of the "Biden 30 x 30 Initiative."
When your favorite motorized recreation group fighting to protect your recreational rights asks for letters of support, write them!
When you see or hear "stuff" that looks like 30x30 sneaking up on us, speak up! Contact your group/organization's land use/advocate/leader and let them know the details.
If we all do our part and pay attention to any walls closing in on us, we can ensure our access to public lands for responsible motorized recreation stays solid!
UNITED NATIONS (U.N.) WORLD AGREEMENT ON BIODIVERSITY
In December 2022, at the "Montreal Summit," nearly 200 nations met and agreed to "halt and reverse the destruction of nature by 2030." This means we have a strategic vision and a global roadmap for the "conservation, protection, restoration and sustainable management of biodiversity and ecosystems for the next decade." **
While not legally binding, the agreement sets the tone, in this author's opinion, for the next few decades of outdoor recreation in the United States.
The U.S. was not part of the U.N. summit or agreement due to some political gridlock in D.C. (imagine that?). However, as noted here, the Administration developed its own version of 30x30 with many of the same goals/visions.
How did we get here?
CHANGES IN ACCESS TO THE AMERICAN LANDSCAPE
If we were to look (briefly) at the evolution of the environmental movement, we know that the 1960s and 1970s started it (for the most part).
1962: Environmental harm brought to light by Rachel Carson in Silent Spring, outlining pesticide dangers like DDT.
1964 Legislation: Congress passed the Wilderness Act – written by Howard Zahniser of The Wilderness Society.
1970 Earth Day: had 20 million Americans "protesting" the management of the environment.
The 1980s: The 1980s era ushered in "global cooling" followed by "global warming." Those slogans soon became "climate change."
1990s era Agenda 21: founded in sustainable development, the most used word in federal land management documents (in my opinion), "sustainable" still rules the day. Agenda 21 is a 40-Chapter master plan to reorganize national laws to the socialist principles of central control.
The 1990s – 2000: The Wildlands Project asked for 50% of the U.S. to go into "wildlands." It would create corridors along streams, rivers, and mountain ranges that interconnect the core reserves. Then create buffer zones around land not in core reserves to manage them sustainably.
1992 Rio Earth Summit: United Nations Conference on Environment and Development; a blueprint for international action on the environment with 179 countries, ensuring sustainable development.
The 2000s to the current era: Then came "programs" and slogans like Global Warming, Climate Change, Sustainability, Habitat Connectivity, and more.
If you add all these together with 30 x 30, they lead us to the same conclusion – this appears to be radical preservation couched as conservation with a new media face at every turn.
HOW MUCH LAND?
12% of American land is within permanently protected areas today. So, where will the additional 18% come from? Private land? More Wilderness? Closures and gates? And just for clarification, 30% of American land and waters is about 720 million acres. So, how big is 720 million acres? Bigger than Alaska (425.8m acres), Texas (171.9m acres), and California (104.8m acres) combined!
After the Montreal Summit, nearly 200 countries have committed to a 30 x 30 plan. It is now a rallying cry for global conservation and the environmental movement to counter the "crisis" of biodiversity loss and species extinction.
There is so much more to this. Everyone in the motorized recreation world needs to pay attention to the changes in public land use and access. When we hear/read words like "sustainability," "biodiversity," or even "conserve," we now need to take a second look. In the author's opinion, while some positive conservation may come from this Initiative, the plan is insidiously sneaking up on more restrictions and closures for motorized recreation.
As always, the American Sand Association stands firm in its commitment to unite, inform and mobilize the sand duning community to protect the right to ride on all public lands in a responsible, environmentally balanced manner. We stand with you to ensure that 30 x 30 hears from the duning community.
JOIN ASA here and help us protect your right to ride (https://americansandassociation.org/join-asa)