August 04, 2020

Udall Applauds Enactment of Major Conservation Law to Fully and Permanently Fund LWCF, Address Park Maintenance Backlog

Udall has championed the Land and Water Conservation Fund throughout his career

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.) released the following statement after the president signed the Great American Outdoors Act, bipartisan legislation Udall championed to fully and permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and address the maintenance backlog facing our public lands, into law. More information on the legislation is available HERE

“This is a momentous conservation victory for New Mexico and for the entire nation. And make no mistake: it was only possible because of overwhelming public support for conservation, and years of dedication from a tireless coalition of conservation champions, sportsmen, community leaders, Native leaders, and their allies in Congress. So we should celebrate today for the grassroots win that it is – while moving forward with a renewed commitment to taking the bold action needed to tackle the environmental crises gripping our planet. 

“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is already our nation’s most successful conservation program, but full and permanent funding will finally allow us to realize its promise – the promise envisioned by my father Stewart Udall, when he helped create the LWCF decades ago. Meanwhile, the substantial down-payment this bill makes to repair and clean up our national parks and public lands will help safeguard these precious places for decades to come, while providing a badly-needed jolt for our economy. This law is a model for how conservation and economic recovery can go hand in hand. And it can help us achieve the urgent national goal of protecting 30 percent of our lands and waters by 2030. 

“President Trump’s signature on the Great American Outdoors Act is welcome, but it cannot erase his administration’s long record of attacks on our public lands and gutting our bedrock environmental protections. We have plenty of work to do – not just to reverse the environmental destruction of the last four years, but to go bigger to face down the climate and nature crises that threaten our planet’s life support system and our prosperity. Like a climber at the top of a Rocky Mountain peak, we should savor this moment, and from this viewpoint we can map out our next steps – knowing more action is needed to protect the natural world and our own future.”