League Urges Congress To Act on Land and Water Conservation Fund

Washington and Old Dominion bike trail in Virginia_credit Joe Flood

More than 200 hunting, fishing, and wildlife conservation organizations and businesses – including the Izaak Walton League and 13 IWLA state divisions – urged federal lawmakers to reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) with full, dedicated annual funding.

In a letter to congressional leadership, these groups – whose members, customers, and leaders represent a large segment of America’s 40 million hunters and anglers – emphasized LWCF’s remarkable 50-year track record of conserving habitat and expanding recreational access to America’s public land. They also expressed the urgent need for Congress to take action and reauthorize LWCF before the end of the current congressional session.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund uses royalties collected from offshore oil and gas development to provide up to $900 million annually to fund public land acquisition, improve access to land and water for outdoor recreation, and establish green spaces for outdoor recreation in urban areas. Every county in every state boasts at least one conservation, access, or green-space project funded by LWCF (like the Virginia rails-to-trails project pictured in the header). However, LWCF expired at the end of September, putting crucial funding for public land conservation and out­door recreation access at risk.

You can read the letter and list of signers here.

Jared Mott, IWLA Conservation Director