Happy Presidents Day! Chicago Gateway Green recognizes the enormous impact America’s highest office has on environmental protection and have compiled a list of some of the greenest presidents in our nation’s history.
1: Theodore Roosevelt- The 26th President consistently lobbied for wilderness protection and had the Forest Reserve Act passed in 1891 along with overseeing the creation of the U.S. Forest Service. Teddy was the first President to really speak out about conservation and he greatly expanded both the National Park and Forest systems.
2: Jimmy Carter- Installing solar panels on the White House along with keeping the thermostat at a toasty 68 degrees are just some of the ways President Carter incorporated sustainability into his presidency. With the passage of important laws including the Soil and Water Conservation Act, the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, and the Superfund Act among others, the Carter administration really outdid themselves to be green!
3: Richard Nixon- When faced with tremendous pressure to act on environmental protection, Nixon delivered. Signing bills establishing both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Clean Air Act (along with a handful of others), Nixon was able to respond to public pressures in the 60’s and 70’s over air and water quality.
4: Barack Obama- Often overlooked, some steps Obama has taken that make him one of our greenest Presidents include raising car fuel efficiency standards and making alternative energy projects a big part of the federal stimulus package.
5: Franklin D. Roosevelt- Inheriting the country at the time of the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, Franklin D. Roosevelt created the Civilian Conservation Corps putting Americans to work planting millions of trees, improving parks and trails, and generally safeguarding the environment. Under his administration, the Soil Conservation Service was established as well as Federal Aid in the Wildlife Restoration Act.