Environmentalists Would Buy the Land They Want To Protect, if The Government Allowed It
On balance, government regulation of public land in the Western United States doesn’t protect the environment from industry. It protects industry from having to compete in the free market.
“Why can’t environmentalists acquire the land that they want to preserve? Often, because it’s illegal,” explains Shawn Regan, vice president of research at the Property and Environment Research Center (PERC), which is a leading advocacy group in the free market environmentalist movement. He says preservation groups are often willing to compete with industry on a level playing field.
“Increasingly, environmental groups are frustrated with the regulatory approach to environmentalism….They are looking for ways to use markets, to use property rights, to use voluntary exchange, to essentially get what they want, which is preserving natural amenities, conserving wildlife and open space.”
“In the case of public lands, we see groups trying to acquire ranchers’ grazing permits. We see groups trying to buy federal en
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