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Planning that Balances Natural Resources with Economic Growth

Young Arizonans are concerned about long-term vision and planning when it comes to issues like water and environmental sustainability, how to reconcile natural resources with economic growth, and the impacts on generations to come.

What Young Arizonans Said

"Striking a balance between sustainability and economic growth is certainly an important goal, but I think it is certainly second to developing plans to make sure that the Arizona population has long-term, sustainable, equitable access to water."

"The idea of “balancing” environmental sustainability with economic gain is absurd. The scale has been tipped in favor of the economy for decades."

"They're the same goal. Economic growth is impossible with resource sustainability."

"While sustainability is wildly important, the economy needs to provide opportunities for people to live comfortably."

How to Interpret the Data

This metric is measured by the number of Arizona cities above 20,000 residents that contain a conservation element within the General Plan. Conservation elements are required in General Plans for cities with populations of 50,000 or more but are optional for smaller communities.

By statute, conservation elements are defined as:

A conservation element for the conservation, development and utilization of natural resources, including forests, soils, rivers and other waters, harbors, fisheries, wildlife, minerals and other natural resources. The conservation element may also cover:

(a) The reclamation of land.

(b) Flood control.

(c) Prevention and control of the pollution of streams and other waters.

(d) Regulation of the use of land in stream channels and other areas required for the accomplishment of the conservation plan.

(e) Prevention, control and correction of the erosion of soils, beaches and shores.

(f) Protection of watersheds. (ARS 9-461.05)

Planning that Balances Natural Resources with Economic Growth is updated annually and is available for the following localities:

  • Arizona

Source: Review of General Plans of Arizona Cities over 20,000 residents

Progress Meters:

Data Profile

Download these consolidated reports to get a “snapshot in time” of the data we’ve collected on our shared priorities. These reports cover all 15 of Arizona’s counties as well as urban areas and demographic subgroups. Each profile features information and data visualizations that Arizonans can use to better understand and impact their communities.
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