Today, April 22, is Earth Day, first declared by Richard Nixon and his Interior Secretary Walter Hickel in 1970, but the environmental movement was begun, actually, by Lyndon B. Johnson and Interior Secretary Stewart Udall in 1965 with the promotion of the first water and air pollution laws as part of the Great Society.
Jimmy Carter proceeded to promote the most advanced environmental record of any one term President, and with the great assistance of Interior Secretary Cecil Andrus.
Then, Bill Clinton, under the prodding of Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt and Vice President Al Gore, contributed greatly to advancement of the environment.
And Barack Obama, under the support of Interior Secretaries Ken Salazar and Sally Jewell has also contributed greatly on the issue of the environment.
Additionally, Franklin D. Roosevelt, with Interior Secretary Harold Ickes, and John F. Kennedy, with Interior Secretary Udall (who served for eight years under both JFK and LBJ), also did a great deal on the environment.
Sadly, with Theodore Roosevelt being the true promoter of the environment in the early part of the 20th century, and assisted by Interior Secretary James R. Garfield and close TR friend Gifford Pinchot, one would have thought that the Republican Party would have continued to be the leader on the issue, but except for Richard Nixon, that has not been the case, and now Republicans are doing everything possible to help advance industry over the environment!
This includes attempting to prevent any future national parks; allowing industrial exploitation of the Grand Canyon and other parks for mining; and wishing to undermine or destroy the Environmental Protection Agency begun during the Nixon Presidency!
So the battle to promote conservation of natural resources and add to public lands is a never ending battle between the political parties, when it should be part of the national agenda that all political leaders believe in and advocate!