In Peril The Vital Conservation Program You Never Heard Of

This week's investigative reporting, analysis and environmental news.
The Revelator

No. 46, Sept. 20, 2018

Hello Revelator readers,

You may not have heard of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, but chances are pretty good that you've benefited from it. Since it was established in 1964 the fund has supported 42,000 projects across the United States, including everything from wildlife refuges to nature trails. Now the fund — one of America's most successful conservation programs — is in danger of going extinct if it isn't reauthorized by the end of the month.

Here's something else that's at risk: the world's cactus species. Cacti may be prickly, but new research finds that the majority of species — even those already identified as endangered — are poorly protected by national parks and other conservation areas. In fact, at least 18 percent of cactus species are completely unprotected. Ouch.

In better news, one way to keep rivers clean is to make sure they have healthy populations of freshwater mussels. A new project aims to raise mussels in a special hatchery and then release them to do their work in rivers that need them. The project is still in its early phases, but it has the potential to benefit both the rivers and imperiled mussels. Read more about this exciting solution.

Finally this week, we all know that climate change is bringing higher temperatures, but did you realize that it will also create more air pollution? Our latest interactive map shows how air pollution will change in your area by the year 2100. Will it be enough to make your air unhealthy?

In case you missed it:

Last week researchers issued a warning that the decline of turtles around the world could have severe ecological implications. Find out more about the threats to terrapins in our recent article about the turtle extinction crisis.

Send us your tips:

What stories should we cover? We welcome your ideas and inside scoops. Drop us a line anytime.

Coming up:

We've got a lot of great stories in the works for you, including articles and essays about insects, dams and conserving "the living dead." (No, not zombies. It's not Halloween yet.) Look for all of our newest links in next week's newsletter, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest headlines as they go live. And while you're on social media, we hope you'll share our stories with your friends.

That's it for this week. As always, thanks for reading.

John Platt

John R. Platt
Editor, The Revelator

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