Senate Votes to Make America’s Most Important Conservation and Recreation Program Permanent
Conservation leaders from across the country today celebrated the passage of legislation in the US Senate that would permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). The provision was included in the Energy Policy Modernization Act, which passed the Senate on a vote of 85-12. This Senate action marks the first vote in history—by either the House or the Senate—to make the landmark conservation law permanent. If the bill is enacted into law, every future generation will continue to enjoy the enduring values and unmatched majesty of our national parks, forests, coastlines, working lands, and historic sites.
In addition, the Senate voted decisively against the harmful Lankford amendment that would have placed unnecessary restrictions on land conservation and significantly weakened LWCF’s central conservation mission. The amendment was defeated on a bipartisan vote of 34-63.
LWCF is the only federal program dedicated to the continued conservation of our national, state, and local parks, forests, wildlife areas, and wilderness. From irreplaceable civil war battlefields to key public outdoor recreation access to working forests, this program has long been at the heart of efforts to protect the lands and waters that sustain public recreation, economic vitality, and community character all across America. More than 1,000 conservation organizations from every state in the union have made permanent LWCF reauthorization the centerpiece of a multi-year advocacy campaign.
The Coalition would like to specially thank Senators Cantwell and Murray for their leadership and efforts in speaking up for the program.
For more information on LWCF and the places in each state protected by LWCF funds, visit www.lwcfcoalition.org.