A new study shows Utah is second only to Nevada in its rate of urban sprawl over a 10-year period and is No. 7 in the country over the past 28 years for undeveloped land giving way to development.
Overall, undeveloped acreage equal to the size of Florida has been paved over in the United States from 1982 to 2010, with 11 million acres of cropland gone and 12 million acres of pasture and rangeland lost to buildings and highways, according to the study.
"There are all kinds of reasons why cropland is like sitting ducks waiting to be massacred and mowed down," said Roy Beck, one of the authors of "Vanishing Open Spaces: How an Exploding U.S. Population is Devouring the Land that Feeds and Nourishes Us."
The study, done by the nonprofit, nonpartisan NumbersUSA Education & Research Foundation, was drawn on data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service. Beck's foundation is an immigration-reduction organization centered around the premise of "environmental sustainability, economic justice, the rule of law, and individual liberty, and opposition to federal immigration policies that threaten these values by forcing massive U.S. population growth."
Deseret Morning News - By Amy Joi O'Donoghue
Updated: Mon, Jul 24th 2017 @ 3:39pm EDT