Johnny Muir, Meet Johnny Cash
A growing trend in the conservation movement has enviros across the U.S. offering financial incentives to farmers and ranchers to protect land or endangered animals. In Indiana, the Nature Conservancy is giving some farmers an average of $3,000 to help them buy equipment needed for low-erosion tillage. In Nevada and Utah, several environmental groups are paying ranchers to keep their herds from grazing on public lands used by hikers. Some enviros don’t like the idea of having to cough up cash to protect public resources, but an increasing number of groups say that this new pragmatic approach can get better results than lawsuits. Cash-for-conservation deals are also drawing some praise from free-market advocacy groups, like the Competitive Enterprise Institute, which rarely agree with enviros.