The White House has issued a proclamation honoring the natural resources of America. It pays tribute to the contributions of American outdoorsmen to conservation efforts and the economy.
In the proclamation, the president declares September 26 to be National Hunting and Fishing Day. He calls upon Americans to celebrate it by enjoying the great outdoors. He also urges Americans to practice conservation and preservation activities with family and friends.
“In addition to being great stewards of the land, hunters and anglers are also keepers of our rich ecological and conservation traditions, which have been passed down through generations,” the proclamation reads. “Hunting and fishing have long functioned as an effective means to manage certain wildlife populations, and time spent in nature promotes awareness of best practices for effectively managing ecosystems throughout the United States.”
The sales of hunting and fishing licenses fund conservation efforts across the country. And as of 2017, outdoor recreation in the U.S. supported 5.2 million jobs and added more than $70 billion to the economy.
The proclamation also references the Great American Outdoors Act. President Trump signed the law in August. It allocates $900 million a year in permanent funding to the Land and Water Conservation Fund and $9.5 billion over five years to restore public lands.
The law was lauded by conservationists for providing badly needed funding for national parks. The number of visitors to national parks has jumped by 50% since 1980. But their budget has remained basically flat. The result is a $12 billion backlog of repairs to national parks infrastructure.
The GAOA plans to create more than 108,000 new jobs in national parks. Most of them are in the hard-hit Western U.S.