Outdoor Industry Commends House Climate Crisis Action Plan

Congressional Action is an Essential Step Toward a Thriving Planet

BOULDER, Colo. – Today, the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) commended the House of Representatives Select Committee on the Climate Crisis for releasing its action plan to solve the climate crisis. The goal of the roadmap is to “build a prosperous, clean energy economy that values workers, advances environmental justice, and is prepared to meet the challenges of the climate crisis.”

“We applaud these members of Congress for putting forth a plan to tackle an imminent risk to our planet and our way of life with aggressive but attainable goals,” said Lise Aangeenbrug, executive director of OIA. “The outdoor industry is all too familiar with the devastating impacts of climate change. Through OIA’s Climate Action Corps and a Climate Policy Committee, we are committed to fighting climate change on two fronts: Through sustainable business practices and annual reporting designed to reduce our industry’s carbon footprint and through advocacy to help shape meaningful climate policy. It is essential for us to work together with policymakers and other stakeholders to provide a sustainable, thriving planet for generations to come.”

More than 80 outdoor companies, including The North Face, Patagonia and Nemo Equipment, have joined the OIA Climate Action Corps. In so doing, they have committed to measure their carbon footprints, set aggressive emission goals, make reduction plans and share their progress publicly every year. In tandem, the Climate Policy Committee, which includes representatives from VF Corporation, Burton, Columbia, Klean Kanteen, Orvis, W.L. Gore, and REI, is working to develop climate policy priorities that reflect the industry’s commitments and guide the advocacy work of the Climate Action Corps and the broader outdoor industry.

In a letter sent to congressional leaders in May, OIA and more than 60 companies asked lawmakers to prioritize policies to reduce carbon emissions in any transportation, energy, and infrastructure provisions they consider as part of COVID-19 economic recovery efforts.

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About the Outdoor Industry Association
Based in Boulder, Colo., with offices in Washington, D.C., Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is the leading trade association for the outdoor industry. OIA unites and serves 1300 manufacturer, supplier, sales representative and retailer members through its focus on trade and recreation policy, sustainable business innovation and outdoor participation. For more information, visit outdoorindustry.org.

Outdoor Industry Applauds Senate Passage of the ‘Great American Outdoors Act’

Bill Permanently Funds Land and Water Conservation Fund, Deferred Maintenance Backlog

BOULDER, Colo. – Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) and its 1,300 member businesses today celebrated the Senate’s passage of the bipartisan “Great American Outdoors Act” (GAOA). Specifically, the bill provides mandatory, permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at $900 million a year and addresses the nearly $20 billion deferred maintenance backlog on federal public lands. The bill now awaits action by the U.S House of Representatives.

“As the country takes steps toward economic recovery from COVID-19, federal investment in our public lands and waterways are critical to boost local economies, create thousands of jobs and protect and improve our national parks,” said Lise Aangeenbrug, executive director of OIA. “These investments would also increase community access to nearby parks and trails, helping address gaps between where people live and nearby opportunities. In turn, more Americans will benefit from the health and well-being that parks and trails provide.”

“Permanent federal investment in the Land and Water Conservation Fund is an essential part of stimulating recovery here in Montana and across the United States,” said Casey Sheahan, CEO of Simms Fishing Products. “Simms and the entire outdoor industry are working to foster happy, healthy and thriving families, despite the obstacles, but it requires resources like those provided through the Great American Outdoors Act to support the increase in people who are spending time outdoors.”

The bill received broad bipartisan support from legislators and stakeholders. It was sponsored by Senators Cory Gardner, R-Colo., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and cosponsored by Senators Steve Daines, R-Mont.; Angus King, I-Maine; Mark Warner, D-Va.; Rob Portman, R-Ohio; Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.; Richard Burr, R-N.C.; and 51 other senators. GAOA also received the endorsement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the past six former U.S. secretaries of the interior, including Ryan Zinke and Sally Jewell. The bill would also direct much-needed funding to support Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) schools, with as much as $475 million being provided over the next five years.

To learn more about the Great American Outdoors Act, click here.

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About the Outdoor Industry Association

Based in Boulder, Colo., with offices in Washington, D.C., Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is the leading trade association for the outdoor industry. OIA unites and serves 1300 manufacturer, supplier, sales representative and retailer members through its focus on trade and recreation policy, sustainable business innovation and outdoor participation. For more information, visit outdoorindustry.org.

Outdoor Industry Presses for Federal Investments in Recreation Infrastructure

Letter to Congress Outlines Steps to Encourage Economic Recovery and Help Americans Thrive Outside

BOULDER, Colo. – May 11, 2020 – Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) and over 60 industry companies today sent a letter to congressional leaders urging them to consider the critical role of America’s public lands and outdoor recreation in upcoming legislative proposals to aid the nation’s economic recovery. Specifically, the letter outlines policies that would aid the recovery of the outdoor recreation economy, which supports 7.6 million jobs, thousands of local businesses and an essential economic force representing 2.2 percent of the nation’s GDP.

“The outdoor recreation economy is a force, connecting people to the outdoors and providing jobs in all 50 states. We are doing everything we can to support people across our country who are increasingly turning to the outdoors to support their physical health and mental wellbeing, but we cannot fully recover without help from Congress,” said Lise Aangeenbrug, executive director of Outdoor Industry Association. “Behind the millions of jobs and billions in tax revenue created by the outdoor recreation industry are businesses small and large and their employees, local communities and families that depend on a strong network of public lands. Federal investment in recreation infrastructure is needed now to ensure families, businesses and the great outdoors can all thrive.”

In the letter sent to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, the outdoor industry leaders wrote, “As we look to recovery in the months ahead, more needs to be done to help our communities and the outdoor industry recover from the current economic shock through investments in recreation infrastructure which will provide more opportunities for all Americans to get outside. The last few weeks have shown that millions of Americans depend upon outdoor recreation opportunities for health and wellness. Now more than ever, we need the mental and physical health benefits that getting outside can provide. Investing in outdoor infrastructure as part of our economic recovery efforts will provide a powerful return for all Americans.”

Specifically, the letter urges Congress to do the following:

  • Pass the Great American Outdoors Act, bipartisan legislation which will strengthen local economies by providing permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and funding for the maintenance backlog across federal public lands
  • Streamline permitting, as included in the Simplifying Outdoor Access for Recreation (SOAR) Act (H.R. 787/S. 1665) and the Recreation Not Red-Tape Act (H.R. 3458/S. 1967), to help reignite local tourism by removing the red tape faced by guided adventure companies and outfitters
  • Prioritize active transportationfunding, such as the Transportation Alternatives Program and the Recreational Trails Program, to provide people with safe, environmentally sensitive and low-cost forms of transportation and recreation
  • Increase funding and expand the Civilian Conservation Corps to address rising unemployment while restoring and stewarding our public lands
  • Provide funding to states and local municipalities for building parks, trails and other outdoor recreation amenities in underserved and under-resourced communities to address the need for ongoing public local services amidst significantly declining state and local tax revenues
  • Prioritize policies to reduce carbon emissions in any transportation, energy and infrastructure provisions to help mitigate the worst impacts of future natural disasters and protect places to recreate for future generations

More details about these provisions are outlined in the letter.

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About the Outdoor Industry Association

Based in Boulder, Colo., with offices in Washington, D.C., Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is the leading trade association for the outdoor industry. OIA unites and serves 1300 manufacturer, supplier, sales representative and retailer members through its focus on trade and recreation policy, sustainable business innovation and outdoor participation. For more information, visit outdoorindustry.org.