Los Angeles, Houston, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego, Dallas Among a Record Number of Communities Taking the Pledge
RESTON, Va. — The Mayors’ Monarch Pledge program has set a new record with 365 mayors and heads of local government committing to create habitat and educate residents about monarch butterfly and pollinator conservation. Communities that have signed the pledge include six of the 10 largest U.S. cities of Los Angeles, Houston, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego and Dallas.
These cities have made specific commitments to build or maintain 144 demonstration gardens, host 127 native plant sales or giveaways, and advance 195 policy and ordinance changes to support the creation and conservation of pollinator habitat.
“We live in a world that’s flooded with grim outlooks for pollinators and wildlife, but year after year we are blown away by the tireless work of these communities and the leadership of mayors across the country,” said Patrick Fitzgerald, senior director of community habitat at the National Wildlife Federation. “Together, these leaders are not only creating habitat for monarch butterflies and pollinators, but also bringing joy and a sense of community to their residents. It’s an honor to be part of such a monumental movement.”
“Monarch butterflies are in a perilous situation, one that we may still have time to correct if we act now and we act together,” said Dr. Rebeca Quiñonez-Piñón, monarch recovery strategist for the National Wildlife Federation. “The work of these community leaders is what we need across the country if we’re going to positively change the course of the monarch butterfly population. This species depends on us, and I’m grateful for the dedication of those who have taken the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge and chosen to stand with us to make a difference.”
For the monarch butterfly, habitat loss and fragmentation continue to be at the top of the list as the major threat to the population. Climatic change is exacerbating habitat loss and fragmentation, affecting the monarch’s breeding grounds, migratory stopover habitats, and overwintering areas. While the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge features the monarch butterfly, the program’s effort to create habitat and educate residents supports a broad range of native pollinators from hummingbirds and native bees to a variety of other butterfly species.
In 2022, mayors and heads of local government, together with local partners like schools, community-based organizations and volunteers, created 832 acres of monarch habitat through the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge.
The Mayors’ Monarch Pledge was introduced in 2015 to provide a framework to engage communities across the United States, Canada, and Mexico to address the pollinator crisis. Government leaders such as mayors and heads of local and Tribal governments are encouraged to commit to actions that promote community engagement and education, enact local policy changes to support monarch conservation, and create habitat for monarchs and other pollinators.
For more information about the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge and a complete list of the signatories, visit NWF.org/MayorsMonarchPledge.
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