CO Governor Polis Statement on “America the Beautiful” Report and Initiative
DENVER – On May 6th, Governor Polis provided a statement in response to the Biden Administration’s release of the “America the Beautiful” report and initiative, fulfilling a directive included in President Biden’s Executive Order 14008. That order included an ambitious conservation goal that has been generally termed ‘thirty by thirty’. This concept is derived from analyses suggesting the need to conserve thirty percent of natural lands by 2030 to avoid major ecosystem and society-wide impacts associated with the loss of natural ecosystems and impacts from climate change.
Governor Polis and the State of Colorado provided early input and suggestions to the Department of Interior via letter, noting Colorado’s extensive leadership and experience, and a call for collaborative and science-driven approaches to the fulfillment of President Biden’s executive order. In particular the state’s input included the many policies Colorado is already undertaking in this space, and a call to ensure that policies and initiatives at the federal level are incentive based and respect private land-ownership that create partnerships rather than mandates. The report released today tracks closely with Colorado’s recommendations.
“The announcement opens the door to a collaborative and sustainable path toward conserving our critical ecosystems, supporting the Colorado way of life, while closing the door to fears about broad one-size-fits-all mandates,” said Governor Jared Polis. “The West, particularly Colorado, are on the front-lines of a changing landscape and a changing climate, and yet our ties to the natural world underpin nearly every aspect of our lives and economy. We must chart an inclusive path toward the long-term sustainability of our natural world, and Colorado’s leadership will play a key role in that effort.”
The Polis administration has shown leadership in consensus-driven conservation efforts including on wildlife corridors, work and support for the CORE Act, creating the Colorado Outdoor Regional Partnerships Initiative, challenging the Uncompahgre Resource Management Plan, the creation of Fisher’s Peak State Park, initiating sustainable funding policy for our parks and public lands, and recent critical stimulus investments in our public lands and outdoors among other efforts to ensure Colorado’s treasured and vast outdoors and the benefits to its citizens remain intact for future generations. The Administration has also championed bold action on climate, clean energy jobs and an equitable transition to a clean energy economy with recent releases of both the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Reduction Roadmap and the Just Transition Action Plan. The Polis administration will also be releasing a public comment draft of its Climate Equity Framework in the coming month.