Mapping Tool Illustrates Conservation Projects in Need of LWCF Investment

September 28, 2021
WASHINGTON

Today, The Trust for Public Land, along with Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) Coalition partners, released an interactive map showcasing trail, park, and outdoor recreation projects in need of this funding.  

The map shows projects identified by state, local, and non-profit partners as well as projects submitted by federal agencies to Congress as part of the annual budget and appropriations process.  

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is critical in ensuring all Americans have equitable access to parks and open space,” said Bill Lee, Senior Vice President for Policy, Advocacy and Government Relations at The Trust for Public Land. “This map illustrates where this funding is needed in order to protect more lands and waterways across the country and to ensure all people have access to these beautiful places.” 

SEE THE MAP HERE: https://lwcf.tplgis.org/mapfuture/  

SEE THE MAP OF COMPLETED LWCF PROJECTS HERE: https://lwcf.tplgis.org/mappast/  

A large number of these potential projects were identified through a public survey conducted by the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable, in partnership with Oregon State University, which collected potential LWCF funding needs from state, local, and tribal governments and non-profit partners. 

LWCF is the primary source of funding that invests in protecting critical natural resource and outdoor recreation lands from development, enhancing public access for recreation, protecting key wildlife habitat, and conserving land and water resources on federally designated and managed lands. In August 2020, the Great American Outdoors Act, which permanently funds the LWCF at $900 million annually, was signed into law with broad, bipartisan support. 

The mapping tool highlights dozens of projects in need of funding, including: 

  • Wolfe Creek Forest, FL: This project would protect two miles of land adjacent to Wolfe Creek, and is part of a larger conservation effort around Naval Air Station Whiting Field. The project continues efforts to protect and connect longleaf pine forests in the Florida Panhandle, and allows for public access and hunting. The Trust for Public Land is actively working to protect and restore the longleaf pine forest, and partnering with the U.S. Navy to assure unfettered military flight operations in the region. 
  • Dundee Forest, NH: LWCF funding would help to protect land in the White Mountains of New Hampshire as a working forest with new trails and recreational access designed to benefit the Towns of Bartlett and Jackson. The project area is adjacent to the White Mountain National Forest, and conservation outcomes are designed to buffer USFS ownership and complement existing management occurring on national forest system lands. 
  • Hawaii Koa Forest, HI: The Trust for Public Land is working partnership with the Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) to help purchase this watershed. DOFAW ownership and management will reduce erosion by bringing together partners to revitalize the native forest and ground cover, which will enhance recharge of water back into the watershed and improve water quality below the property. LWCF funding would help allow public access to open up for hiking, pig hunting, swimming, cultural access, and education at one of the largest remaining old growth koa forests in Hawaii.  
  • Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge, IL/WI: LWCF funds are needed to protect land within this urban Refuge which serves 12 million people in the greater Chicago/Milwaukee metro area. Public recreational opportunities at the refuge include migratory bird, small and upland game, and big game hunting, fishing, hiking, birding, photography, environmental interpretation and education. 

About The Trust for Public Land 

The Trust for Public Land creates parks and protects land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for generations to come. Millions of people live within a 10-minute walk of a Trust for Public Land park, garden or natural area, and millions more visit these sites every year. To support The Trust for Public Land and share why nature matters to you, visit www.tpl.org