Hillary's Vision for Outdoor Recreation, Conservation and Stewardship

Presidential candidate wants to double the size of the outdoor economy over the next decade.

By Alex Boian June 2, 2016

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton released a plan yesterday that lays out a vision for the future of outdoor recreation, a commitment to conservation, clean energy and water, and collaborative stewardship of America’s public lands and waters.

Clinton, citing the OIA Outdoor Recreation Economy report, stated several goals, including:

  • Set a goal of doubling the size of the outdoor economy within 10 years, creating millions of new jobs and up to $700 billion dollars in new annual economic activity.
  • Celebrate the 100th anniversary of our country’s national park system – America’s “best idea” – by establishing an American Parks Trust Fund to scale up and modernize how we protect and enhance our country’s great outdoors.
  • Launch an initiative to restore and revitalize more than 3,000 city parks within ten years.
  • Expand access to public lands for hunting, fishing and recreation by making publicly accessible 50% of the public land that is currently inaccessible.

“Secretary Clinton’s recognition of the importance of the outdoor recreation industry to our national economy and her call to double the size of the recreation economy within 10 years is a welcome addition to the presidential campaign,” said Toad&Co CEO and OIA Board Chair Gordon Seabury. “We look forward to hearing Donald Trump’s ideas about investing in our industry for healthy communities, growing economies and a sustainable United States.”

OIA has been in contact with each presidential campaign to encourage the candidates to make the outdoor recreation economy part of their message to voters, citing our October 2015 polling data showing strong support from registered voters in the swing states of Colorado and Nevada.

Reflecting some of the outdoor industry’s policy priorities, Clinton’s plan calls for the Small Business Administration (SBA) to dedicate a portion of SBA loans to entrepreneurs seeking to launch small businesses in the outdoor industry as well as existing business owners in gateway communities.

Clinton also calls on the federal government to “to measure and track the economic contributions and jobs of the outdoor recreation industry for the first time, as it currently does for other key sectors.” Last month, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell announced a pilot program to measure the economic impact of the outdoor recreation. There are two bipartisan bills pending in Congress that also direct the federal government to measure our industry’s impact on U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

You can read Secretary Clinton’s Op-Ed in the San Jose Mercury News highlighting some of the key elements of her plan for the conservation and collaborative stewardship of America’s great outdoors here.

The full “Conservation and Collaborative Stewardship of America’s Great Outdoors” fact sheet is available here.

As the November election approaches, OIA will be working with local, state and the presidential campaigns, and engaging interested industry professionals to ensure outdoor recreation, access to public lands and waters and other industry issues are part of the national debate.