Sierra Club Hits the Nation’s Capitol for Great Outdoors America Week

Activists from all over the country join forces to share their love of connecting people with the outdoors and the protection of our wild and green spaces

WASHINGTON, DC–(ENEWSPF)–June 25, 2012 – Sierra Club activists, including outings leaders, veterans, teachers and youth, from around the country came to Washington, DC to participate in Great Outdoors America Week (June 25-29, 2012 in Washington DC) and remind their elected leaders how important it is to not only enjoy our public lands, but to protect them, too.

Studies show that Americans are not spending much time outdoors and 80% of Americans live in urban areas with little access to green spaces. The numbers are even bleaker for our nation’s children, with young people spending an average of 7.5 hours a day connecting to electronic media, and less time getting outside in nature. This growing divide between America and our treasured landscapes threatens the health of future generations and conservation in this country.

“The need for Americans to get outside is greater than ever. They are more likely to spend their free time surfing the web than surfing the waves,” says Jacqueline Ostfeld, Policy and Operations Manager for the Sierra Club Mission Outdoors program. “Great Outdoors America Week allows our volunteers and activists to raise their voices and let our leaders know how critically important it is to provide more opportunities for Americans to connect with our natural heritage.”

Americans recognize the importance of our national legacy. It’s even something politicians can agree on: Leaders from both parties over the years—from Theodore Roosevelt to George Bush—have acted to protect special wild places because they know the great outdoors provides recreation and enjoyment for American families. Due to this love of and the benefits from the great outdoors, there is wide public support for protections.

“Dedicated volunteers are devoting time and resources to come to Washington to let our leaders know that not only must we protect our public lands for future generations, but that we should also do what we can to connect Americans to those lands that we have worked so hard to protect,” said Athan Manuel, Sierra Club Lands Team Director.


About Sierra Club

Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization. Inspired by nature, we are 1.4 million of your friends and neighbors, working together to protect our communities and the planet. Sierra Club’s Mission Outdoors program is working to reconnect America with the outdoors. Read more at http://www.sierraclub.org/missionoutdoors. Sierra Club’s Resilient Habitats Campaign actively works to protect the lands, water and wildlife that Americans know and love. Read more at http://www.sierraclub.org/habitat/

About Great Outdoors America Week

Great Outdoors America Week offers opportunity for advocates to take direct action on a number of conservation issues, ranging from wilderness and national monument protection to reconnecting inner-city kids to the great outdoors. Great Outdoors America Week serves as another example of the long-standing, bipartisan tradition of conservation in the United States.

Source: sierraclub.org