ASHBURN, Va. — A recent poll conducted by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), a network of more than 52,000 park and recreation professionals and advocates, reaffirms that Americans are passionate about the preservation of public lands, such as local, state and national parks.
Making the permanent authorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund should be an even bigger priority for lawmakers and the new administration, the group reported.
The majority (82 percent) of Americans older than 18 polled say it’s important to preserve public lands, including parks, recreation areas, forests, conservation areas and wildlife refuges. This support crosses people of all ages with Millennials (67 percent) the most likely to support the protection of open space. A majority of Baby Boomers (56 percent) and Generation Xers (61 percent) share this passion.
Very few Americans (seven percent) don’t see the preservation of public land as being important, the survey discovered.
“Preservation of our public lands is one of the most pressing issues of our time,” said Barbara Tulipane, NRPA president and CEO. “Making sure parks and open space are protected for future generations is our goal; however, the support of local, state and federal government is essential.”
The typical park and recreation agency manages at least 368 acres of open space. More than 32 percent of that space is undeveloped. NRPA encourages lawmakers to support permanent authorization of the LWCF, as it will help ensure access to parks and open space for generations to come.
The LWCF State Assistance Program has provided more than 40,000 grants to states and localities in support of close-to-home conservation and outdoor recreation. These grants have ensured the permanent protection of 3 million acres of public recreation lands across every state and territory of the nation.
To learn more about LWCF and the State Assistance Program, visit www.nps.gov/subjects/lwcf/stateside.htm.
For more information about NRPA’s advocacy efforts on behalf of the LWCF, visit www.nrpa.org/our-work/advocacy.
This poll is part of NRPA’s Park Pulse, a continuing series of monthly surveys that gauge the public’s opinion on topics relating to parks and recreation. To explore previous Park Pulse survey results, visit www.nrpa.org/Park-Pulse.
To view the interactive charts with the survey results, as well as a full-size infographic, click here.
SOURCE: National Recreation and Park Association press release