The Biden administration laid out its plan on Thursday to conserve 30% of U.S. lands and waters by 2030. The report seeks to rebrand what has become known as “30×30” and emphasizes “voluntary efforts” by states, tribal nations, and private landowners instead of expanding the footprint of federal land ownership.
The multiagency plan was signed by Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and CEQ head Brenda Mallory. The administration says the effort to expand land and water conservation will create thousands of new jobs, address climate change, and expand access for communities of color and low-income communities historically discriminated against and segregated in “housing, transportation, conservation, and natural resource policy.”
Currently, about 12% of U.S. lands and 25% of U.S. waters are protected, according to research from the Center for American Progress.