"President Obama launched the America's Great Outdoors initiative Friday, an attempt to reshape U.S. conservation policy at a time when the nation is facing new environmental threats but the government is hard-pressed to afford new spending programs.
In a brief speech at the Interior Department, Obama said he intends to build on "a breathtaking legacy of conservation that still enhances our lives." He said the tradition began with Theodore Roosevelt, whom he described as "one of my favorite presidents," although he added, "I will probably never shoot a bear."
Obama said the nation's growing population, pollution and other factors are "putting a rising strain on our lands." He said government cannot address conservation issues alone, and he urged private industry, local communities, Native American leaders and volunteers to help protect the outdoors. "
Juliet Eilperin and Scott Wilson report for the Washington Post April 17, 2010.
"No American Left Inside" (Dot Earth)