Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) applauds the establishment of the American Climate Corps. Developing the next generation of conservationists has been a top priority and a major outcome of NACD’s Climate Action Task Force.
Conservation districts and the original Civilian Conservation Corps collaborated on programs and projects across the country to respond to the severe soil erosion issues of the Dust Bowl. Modern day corps, such as Conservation Legacy, remain important partners. They provide critical capacity, robust training, and the skill set needed to tackle initiatives that increase climate resilience at the landscape scale.
The government-wide American Climate Corps will provide for a robust and diverse recruitment pipeline that is critical for the future success of conservation and climate programs. With 3,000 conservation districts across the U.S. and its territories, NACD can also provide valuable learning opportunities for participants. Conservation districts work with landowners and operators across rural and urban communities. They provide education and technical assistance on priorities such as soil health, water quality, coastal resilience, forest health, wildfire mitigation and recovery, habitat restoration, food security, and equitable access to programming, community green spaces, and trees.
“Opportunities to get ‘boots on ground’ with conservation districts provides the next generation meaningful development opportunities and leadership roles within local communities,” said Kim LaFleur, NACD President. LaFleur also serves as the State Advisor and Program Director of the Massachusetts FFA Association. “These emerging leaders can benefit greatly from the decades of expertise that exist within conservation districts, empowering them to take on the climate challenge and deploy innovative solutions through the locally led conservation delivery system.”
To learn how you can join the American Climate Corps, please visit the White House’s American Climate Corps webpage.
NACD’s Climate Action Task Force positions can be found here.