Environmental Analysis for Development Planning - Summary Report: Year One
Conant, Ralph W.
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In June, 1973, the Southwest Center for Urban Research initiated a study of the problem of management of land and the natural environment in Chambers County, Texas, a sparsely populated rural area between the Houston-Galveston and Beaumont-Port Arthur metropolitan areas. The objective of this study was to fix upon ways and means for responsible governmental agencies (at all levels) and private groups to guide development so that all interested parties would benefit. We and our sponsors, the National Science Foundation-Division of Research Applied to National Needs, saw the study as an opportunity to develop a strategy for dealing with problems faced by many rural agricultural areas which happen to lie in the path of rapid urbanization and industrialization. In its larger concept, the study addressed a growing recognition in the nation that land and its natural appurtenances are a scarce and threatened resource, and that there is a national need for public and private policymakers to learn how to manage this resource in such a way as to maintain and enhance the quality of life throughout the nation.