LETTER: Increase investment in the Puget Sound environment
I completely agree with Jay Manning and Bill Taylor [“What we can do about ocean acidification and climate change,” opinion, Oct. 10].
For the sake of our environment and the economy, we must protect Puget Sound.
In doing so, every tool at our disposal should be used to address this issue through restoration projects as well as increasing access to outdoor recreation to show Washingtonians that everyone has a stake in conservation.
For some context, of the $523 billion spent nationally last year on recreation, $86.2 billion went to boating and $35.5 billion was spent on fishing. That’s 1 in 5 dollars spent on boating and recreational fishing.
One under-utilized tool is the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP). Two-thirds of WWRP projects protect or restore Puget Sound while others fund biking and walking trails that offer an enticing alternative to driving.
Thanks to Gov. Inslee’s support, we are seeing strong conservation spending. This year over $300 million was allocated in the capital construction budget for everything from habitat restoration to parks, $65 million of which went to the WWRP.
I hope we will see increased investment in our environment during the next biennium.