The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) is crucial to the conservation of our public lands, read below to learn about LWCF and get updates on the state of the fund and its reauthorization.

Congress is at the cusp of permanently reauthorizing LWCF, established almost a half-century ago to guarantee America’s natural, historic and outdoor recreation heritage. Most likely, there’s a park, trail, greenway or waterway very close to you that was funded in part or in whole by LWCF dollars.

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“The public lands package, just signed into law, is a welcome gift to Americans who love the outdoors, our fragile lands and waters and to future generations,” said Amy Roberts, executive director of Outdoor Industry Association. “We are proud of Republicans and Democrats, public lands advocates, outdoor industry members and countless others who worked to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund and who pushed this package over the finish line. We look forward to working with local communities, federal agencies and more to implement the programs this bill authorizes, seeing the economic growth for rural and urban communities this bill spurs and most importantly gaining more access to our great outdoors for all Americans.”


Today, after years of work by advocates from across the outdoor industry, Congress passed one of the largest public lands bills in recent history. The passage of S. 47, the Natural Resources Management Act, exemplifies the power of the outdoors in bringing people together and bridging partisan divides to pass legislation that benefits all Americans. All that’s left now is for President Trump to sign it into law.

February 25, 2019 – Act Today to Make Sure Your Representative Votes for LWCF Tomorrow

Tomorrow, Feb. 26, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on a historic public lands bill that will permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). We need your help to get this bill to the finish line. Please urge your member of Congress to vote for S. 47 tomorrow! If passed by the House, the bill will go to the president for signature and will be enacted into law.

February 12, 2019 – Passes Senate, on to the House

Due to the advocacy efforts of outdoorists across the country and thanks to the leadership of key members of Congress, today the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly approved S. 47, a vast public-lands bill that permanently reauthorizes the Land and Water Conservation Fund! Ensuring that this historic program will continue to protect lands and waters while also promoting outdoor recreation. The public lands package also improves public land management, protects treasured landscapes, increases public access for recreation, works to get more kids outside and helps create opportunities for veterans and youth to conserve and rebuild natural resources. The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration. It is critical that we urge the House to act quickly and approve this bipartisan package.

Tell Your Representative to Reauthorize LWCF

February 6, 2019 – It’s Alive

There is some good news for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. S.47, is currently being debated on the Senate floor. Many of the bills under consideration for the package would have measurable benefits for conservation of our public lands and waters, the outdoor recreation experiences these places provide, and the thriving outdoor recreation economy that our public lands support.

Included in this package is permanent reauthorization for LWCF which would guarantee the program will thrive for years to come. Outdoor Industry Association’s government affairs team is confident that the package will receive overwhelming bipartisan support in the Senate and move to the House of Representatives for consideration. Our goal would be to have Congress approve and send to the President for his signature early this year.

September 30, 2018 – LWCF Expired

On September 30 of this year, Congress let the fund expire. There is some promising news, though. Before adjourning for the 2018 autumn recess, the House Natural Resources Committee and the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee both passed clean permanent reauthorization bills. The Senate bill included full funding for the program. Congress returned to work in mid-November for what is known as the lame-duck session. It is not uncommon for Congress to pass sweeping legislation packages during a lame-duck in order to clear the decks before a new session of Congress begins. Outdoor Industry Association’s government affairs team is hopeful that several pieces of recreation legislation, including LWCF reauthorization, will have enough momentum to pass either in their own public lands funding package or as part of a larger omnibus package.

We’re encouraging our followers to reach out to your members of Congress and make sure the bills pass. Learn even more about the fund in the video and two podcasts, below, and check out the map of projects across the country that are funded by LWCF. Then use our social media toolkit to help us get the word to lawmakers in D.C. about why LWCF is important to you and your community. Make sure they know what you—and they—stand to lose if they don’t reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund.


Listen to the three Audio Outdoorist episodes about the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), America’s premier federal program that reinvests offshore energy revenue into conservation to ensure that we all have access to the outdoors.

Part 1: Montbello Open Space Park

Deborah Williams visits Montbello Open Space Park outside of Denver to learn how Environmental Learning for Kids, a small, grassroots program in an urban community teamed up with The North Face and the Trust for Public Land to bring a much-needed and sorely lacking nature-play resource to local kids.

Part 2: Rocky Mountain National Park

Join Deborah Williams in iconic Rocky Mountain National Park to learn about how the Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Trust for Public Land worked together to fold a parcel of privately held land into Colorado’s most iconic public park, thus protecting the inholding from private development.

Part 3: Biking from Pittsburgh to D.C.

In this episode, host Ben Schenck discovers that not only can he see the impacts of LWCF out his window, he can actually bike all the way from his home in Pittsburgh to our nation’s capitol on a series of trails that were connected thanks to LWCF dollars. Travel along with Ben as he rides more than 300 miles and learns about the history of the trail system. Along the way he meets other outdooirsts who are thru-biking or section-biking and -hiking the Great Alleghany Passage Trail and the C&O Towpath.

LWCF 101

A quick guide to the Land and Water Conservation Fund and why it is important for outdoor businesses.


This is a story of how LWCF transformed a run down area into a recreation hub in downtown Denver. Get inspired about the possibilities of LWCF and the areas you recreate that have been funded by LWCF.

*This map includes a few NPS projects that are not funded by LWCF.

Share, Advocate and Inspire

Get out there and spread the love on your social media.

Concept: Where can you see LWCF from? We want to celebrate the different ways outdoorists experience their public land spaces, especially with so many LWCF sites that are right in our own backyards.

Ideas: How do you live an outdoorist life? Do you look at your local park through the windows of your office, eagerly awaiting your lunchtime run? Do you see LWCF sites each morning from the back of your van after spending the night sleeping on public lands? Are you a hiker, who ‘sees’ the impacts of LWCF from the perspective of your hiking boots? Can you see LWCF from the top of your local park’s playground? From the edge of your paddleboard? From the tips of your skis? From the anchors of a climb?

How to share:

  • Head to your local LWCF site (or a place where you can see it from), snap a photo of you getting after it outdoors, and share using the #ICanSeeLWCF hashtag.
  • In your caption, share why this public land space is important to you, and feel free to use our messaging below to add an educational punch to your storytelling.
  • During the week of April 16th, we’ll be on the ground with outdoor industry leaders to lobby in D.C. and make our voices heard
  • Pssst… We’ll be giving away outdoorist socks to our favorite photos.

Social Posts + Messaging:

  • Did you know #LWCF funding has supported public lands in nearly every county in the US? #ICanSeeLWCF from [insert your local LWCF site].
  • Did you know #LWCF funds protect national treasures in and around national parks, forests, monuments and refuges as well as state and local programs? Here in [your state]. #ICanSeeLWCF from [insert your local LWCF site].
  • Did you know LWCF is funded by a percentage of the more than $6.7 billion in annual offshore oil and gas lease revenue, NOT taxpayer dollars? Here in [your state]. #ICanSeeLWCF from [insert your local LWCF site].
  • Every year, LWCF can receive up to $900 million of offshore gas and drilling revenue to spend on conservation efforts; although, Congress has chronically underfunded it. #ICanSeeLWCF from [insert your local LWCF site], and I support fully funding LWCF because ______.
  • Here in [your state]. #ICanSeeLWCF from [insert your local LWCF site]. LWCF needs permanent authorization and full funding to best protect the future of our public lands.