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Fact Sheet: Encouraging Volunteerism and Environmental Conservation

April 22, 2005

Today's Presidential ActionToday, President Bush Went To Tennessee To Promote Volunteerism And Herald Environmental Progress.

Background: President Bush Encourages Personal Stewardship And Innovation

President Bush Is Dedicated To Building On America's Ethic Of Stewardship And Personal Responsibility To Improve The Environment.

  • The Great Smoky Mountains National Park Demonstrates Volunteerism's Potential. The volunteer program at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the largest in the southeast and the third largest in the nation. In 2004, 2,129 volunteers in the park contributed more than 100,000 hours of service.
  • President Bush Is Committed To Cooperative Conservation. The President's FY 2006 budget includes half a billion dollars to support a variety of collaborative conservation efforts between the government, nonprofit organizations, and individuals devoted to environmental improvement. This funding will be used to restore watersheds, protect wildlife habitats, construct trails, and assist rural economies.

President Bush Will Continue To Improve The Quality Of Our Air, Water, And Land.

  • Improving Our Air Quality. The Administration is leading the effort to improve air quality with implementation of the new Clean Air Interstate Rule, Clean Air Nonroad Diesel Rule, and Clean Air Mercury Rule. Additionally, Clear Skies legislation will require power plants to cut air pollution by about 70 percent. Since President Bush took office in 2001, air pollution is down by more than 10 percent. In spite of economic and population growth, America has reduced total emissions of the six principal air pollutants by more than 50 percent between 1970 and 2003.
    • Restoring American Wetlands. On Earth Day 2004, the President made a commitment to create, improve, and protect at least three million wetland acres over the next five years. After one year, approximately 832,000 acres of wetlands have already been preserved. As part of this effort, President Bush has nearly doubled funding to protect habitats, conserve water, and improve streams and rivers near working farms and ranches.
  • Cleaning And Redeveloping Brownfields. During his first term, President Bush signed historic bipartisan legislation fulfilling his commitment to clean up abandoned industrial sites to better protect public health, create jobs, and revitalize communities. Since 2001, nearly 1,200 brownfields have been restored and prepared for redevelopment. In upcoming years, the President will increase funding to convert these once-contaminated sites into parks and places of business.

President Bush Is Focused On Restoring And Preserving Our National Parks For Future Generations To Enjoy.

  • Park Maintenance Funding Has Increased 40 Percent From 2001 To 2006. To restore the quality of our natural resources and to ensure that America's national parks remain a great place to gather, President Bush is fulfilling his five-year, $4.9-billion funding commitment to address the maintenance backlog in the Nation's parks.
  • The National Park Service Has Completed, Planned, Or Has Underway More Than 4,000 Improvement Projects As Of 2004. This process has benefited all 49 states with national parks. And the Park Service has for the first time in its history implemented a system to accurately measure and prioritize the maintenance needs in our parks to ensure the most vital needs are addressed first.

George W. Bush, Fact Sheet: Encouraging Volunteerism and Environmental Conservation Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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