Video: The Outdoor Recreation Economy Just Got a Lot Bigger

In case you missed it, we made a pretty big announcement this morning. From the historic 13th floor of the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., and with the help of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson, TRCP's Whit Fosburgh and REI's Eric Artz, we released the latest version of the Outdoor Recreation Economy report.

By Deborah Williams April 26, 2017

You can watch the full press conference here, or check out the highlights below.

  • Outdoor recreation in America is a powerful force. How powerful? Try $887 billion in annual consumer spending, 7.6 million jobs and $125 billion in federal and state tax revenue.
  • Research shows that investments in outdoor recreation infrastructure correlate with reduced crime rates, improved education outcomes and lower health care costs.
  • Outdoor recreation infrastructure is invaluable for states and communities that want to grow their economies.


  • More than 120 of our industry’s leaders from companies large and small are excited to be hiking the Halls of Congress during our annual Capitol Summit lobbying event this week, reinforcing the impact the outdoor recreation economy has on our nation, our cities, our towns and rural areas, how the protection and balanced management of our public lands infrastructure plays a vital role in the nation’s economic health and the need for long term funding through appropriations for the very land agencies that are the stewards of our public lands.


  • “I’m adamantly opposed to the sale of public lands,” said Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, as he took the podium. “And so is my boss.”
  • “Despite what may divide us, we ALL enjoy the outdoors,” said REI’s Eric Artz. “We drive economic impact in a way that brings together community.”
  • “Outdoor recreation is a recession-proof industry,” said Whit Fosburgh or the Teddy Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “It’s the Golden Goose; it’s good for people and it’s good for the economy.”
  • On the potential transfer of public lands in the Western states, Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson said definitively: “I can tell you it’s not going to happen.”

Use this social media toolkit to help amplify the new numbers and the message that the outdoor recreation economy is a powerful force.