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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

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Trump case expected to head to the jury today; IN food banks concerned about draft Farm Bill; NH parents, educators urge veto of anti-LGBTQ+ bills; Study shows a precipitous drop in migratory fish populations, in US and worldwide.

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Actor Robert DeNiro joins Capitol Police officers to protest against Donald Trump at his New York hush money trial as both sides make closing arguments. And the Democratic Party moves to make sure President Biden will be on the ballot in Ohio.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

West's Latino voters want conservation over development on public lands

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Monday, February 19, 2024   

Voters, including 74% of Republicans, 87% of Independents and 96% of Democrats, would support candidates in elections who prioritize conservation on public lands, according to Colorado College's latest Conservation in the West Poll.

Maite Arce, president and CEO of the Hispanic Access Foundation, said the poll's spotlight on top concerns for Latino, Black and Indigenous voters showed clean water, clean air, wildlife and public lands are not just environmental issues.

"They are integral to their health, mental health, jobs, local economies," Arce outlined. "These elements also play a pivotal role in preserving culture and heritage."

Just 26% of voters surveyed want more public lands opened for fossil-fuel extraction. A strong majority said issues such as declining fish and wildlife populations, habitat loss, dwindling and polluted water supplies, microplastics, uncontrollable wildfires, air pollution, loss of pollinators and natural spaces were extremely or very serious problems.

Lori Weigel, principal of the research firm New Bridge Strategy, said virtually all groups surveyed across eight Mountain West states including Colorado agreed spending more time outdoors would improve mental health, especially for children.

"One thing that struck me as a mom of a teenager was that moms were the highest group here," Weigel observed. "Three quarters said they felt like spending more time in the outdoors would help the mental health crisis we're seeing in kids."

Nearly eight in 10 Latino voters said the impacts of climate change have been significant in their state over the past decade, with 73% agreeing clean energy production can be boosted while preserving natural areas.

Arce noted the poll confirmed Black, Indigenous and Latino communities, which are disproportionately impacted by air and water pollution, are ready and eager to be heard.

"It's our collective responsibility to amplify their voices, champion justice and ensure a future where everyone regardless of their background can enjoy the benefits of nature equally," Arce concluded.

Disclosure: The Hispanic Access Foundation contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Environment, Human Rights/Racial Justice, and Livable Wages/Working Families. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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