Iowa voters’ overwhelming support for ‘Question 1,’ Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy Amendment creating a dedicated conservation trust fund , shows Iowans are serious about the need for clean water and ending soil erosion, says Sean McMahon, campaign chair.
“This is the biggest conservation victory in Iowa’s history and a clear signal for increased conservation funding,” says McMahon, state director of The Nature Conservancy in Iowa. “Clearly Iowans see the need for clean water, ending soil erosion, restoring wetlands to protect against future flooding and enhancing outdoor recreational opportunities.”
“The really gratifying thing is that in this age of political bickering, Iowans of all political view came together to support the amendment.” McMahon notes that some 130 groups, representing more than 300,000 Iowans, formed a coalition to promote the amendment, and that Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy garnered 32,000 more votes than Governor-elect Branstad at the top of the ticket.
As McMahon points out, the need is clearly there:
• There are more than 500 polluted waterways in Iowa so impaired that Iowans can’t drink from them or swim in them
• Precious topsoil is eroding, on average, at the rate of 5 tons per acre per year from Iowa’s farms.
• Our once thriving wild bird populations are at an all-tome low,
• Reduced wetlands have led to unnatural flooding and unacceptable runoff into our waterways.
“Creating the trust fund is a great step toward forever improving conservation in this great state for current and future generations,” says McMahon.
The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to protect ecologically important lands and waters for nature and people. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org.