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As part of the New Deal, President Franklin Roosevelt greatly expanded the National Park Service and its mission to include history and culture as well as nature and re-organized it for an expanded role in preserving our national treasures. The National Park Service’s history has a chapter dedicated to FDR’s National Park vision and legacy:
FDR expanded the National Park Service mission in 1933 to include not only parks and monuments but also national cemeteries, national memorials, and national military parks.
The reorganization paved the way for inclusion of historic sites such as the Vanderbilt Mansion and FDR’s own home, which he made part of the national park system in 1939 and 1943.
FDR was responsible for adding over one-quarter of the 411 areas in today’s National Park Service system.
By 1934, the states of Tennessee and North Carolina had transferred deeds for 300,000 acres to the federal government to create the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and on September 2, 1940, Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the Great Smoky Mountains National Park “for the permanent enjoyment of the people.”
Why This Matters: You might not guess it, but the most visited National Park in the U.S. is the Great Smoky Mountains National Park dedicated by FDR, which drew more than eleven million visitors in 2017 — nearly twice the number of the second most popular one, the Grand Canyon National Park. And thanks to FDR, our notion of what we should preserve as parks has forever shifted to include sites like Stonewall National Monument, commemorating the place where the struggle for LGBTQ rights began, and Martin Luther King National Historical Park to commemorate his birthplace and his role in the Civil Rights movement.
Climate change is having long-term effects on the marriage prospects of farmers in Andhra Pradesh, India,The Conversation reported today. As part of a larger project running from 2018 to 2021, the researchers interviewing over 1000 farmers to learn about the “increasing vulnerability of agriculture” in the region. What they found was, in their own words, “unexpected.”
Why This Matters: As the researchers note in their study, “the focus on climate change hitherto has mostly focused on the impacts on the natural environment.”
by Julia Fine, ODP Contributing Writer As Arun Gupta and Michelle Fawcett reported last week, coronavirus is “exploding” in populations of farmworkers across America. In their report, they noted that on a single farm in Tennessee, all 200 workers tested positive for the disease while in Immokalee, Florida, results indicated that over 1,000 migrant workers […]
by Julia Pyper, host/producer, Political Climate podcast, Contributing Editor at Greentech Media The urgency of reaching net-zero emissions by 2050 hasn’t dwindled amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. But renewed calls to address long-standing racial injustices further underscore that climate solutions can no longer function in a silo. House Democrats’ new “Congressional Action Plan for […]
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