As featured on Georgia Conservancy’s Facebook Page – A conservation victory for Georgia and the Nation! Yesterday, the bi-partisan Great American Outdoors Act, was signed into law by the President. The measure, introduced last year by the late Georgia Congressman John Lewis, will fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and allocate nearly $2 billion annually to improvements on federal lands.
Since its authorization by Congress in 1965, the LWCF has helped to provide support for and protection of our most iconic national treasures, including Grand Canyon National Park, the Appalachian Trail, Gettysburg National Military Park, and Georgia’s Okefenokee Swamp National Wildlife Refuge.
Funded exclusively by the revenue from federal offshore oil and gas leases, the LWCF provides for the preservation and management of America’s National Parks, Wildlife Refuges and Forests, as well as the expansion of recreational access, the targeted conservation of threatened lands and waters, the protection of endangered and threatened species, and the establishment of urban parks and preserves across the country.
During the more than five decades of the LWCF existence, Georgia has received approximately $312 million for the protection of our lands and waters. The Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area (CRNRA), the Chattooga Wild and Scenic River, Cumberland Island National Seashore, Bond Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, and recently, Sansavilla Wildlife Management Area are among just some of places in our state that have benefited from this critical program.