I live in Dekalb County, Georgia: 173,393 acres, western border cuts close to the very heart of Atlanta. As of December 31, 2001, there were 8,594 acres of greenspace, less than 5%. Since 70% of Dekalb is already developed, the race is on for what's left.
Arthur M. Blank, co-founder of Home Depot, is an advocate of maintaining greenspace inside Atlanta's I-285 perimeter highway, since, as he puts it, once that area is fully developed, it's gone forever; he uses his own cash to buy up land for greenspace. Dekalb County itself is also buying land for greenspace, spending $19 million for 1,142 acres last year.
I've lived here for 27 years. I can quite possibly remember almost every potholed two-lane street that has since become a four-lane road with a median strip, every plot of wooded land that is now paved for parking or bulldozed over for housing. A rocket scientist is not needed to understand what's going on. I don't think a rocket scientist is needed to determine the effect car exhaust is having around here, either.
What am I trying to say? I don't know, I may be just getting started...