The WVP believes that public lands present an economic opportunity for the multi-billion dollar outdoor industry. Decisions to protect limited portions of public lands are decisions to protect vital local economies.
We support protecting some lands to make sure outfitters, guides, and the outdoor gear and hospitality industries counties to have world-class attractions to grow their businesses. Recent decisions by national land managers in Moab and about the greater sage-grouse show that protecting some lands from traditional resource development can be a win-win for Western economies.
Conserving the economic value of the “sagebrush sea”
Conserving sagebrush landscapes and the economies that depend on them is worth millions of dollars to communities across the West, according to our analysis. The WVP applauds Interior’s recent decision to conserve millions of acres of sage-grouse habitat, which will protect those values, along with farming, ranching and oil and gas development.
Defending the Land and Water Conservation Fund
The Land and Water Conservation Fund is a popular program to protect parks and other area crucial to the outdoor economy. Despite its long-running bipartisan support, it has fallen under attack from a handful extreme members of Congress who similarly back the movement to seize and sell national public lands. The WVP has fought back against these efforts with public education campaigns to hold the opponents of LWCF accountable.
Permanent protection for our most treasured landscapes
While the vast majority of public lands continue to be used for multiple purposes, including the traditional resource extraction activities, there are some places that are too special too develop. That’s why the WVP supports setting a side some areas for permanent public protection, following a thorough public review process, including an evaluation of the economic impacts of the proposal.