Our parks and natural areas are available and preserved for the good of all of us. Whether it’s a neighborhood park or a state wilderness area—our parks and public land are where Michiganders connect with nature and also with each other.
For many decades, Michiganders have worked hard to preserve, protect and invest in our parks and natural areas. Their commitment made our family picnics, our beach days and our camping trips possible. Without a doubt, those family traditions are worth passing on to the next generation.
And today we have the knowledge and skills to manage our natural areas more responsibly and sustainably than ever before.
But today some of our leaders don’t seem to understand what’s at stake. Where you see sand dunes, they see dollar signs. Where you see community gardens, they see wasted space. Where you see a vibrant forest, they see government overreach.
That disconnect has produced state legislators who want to auction off our forests and parks to the highest bidder.
In recent years, we’ve seen protections for critical sand dunes dismantled, efforts to strip funding for some of our most cherished parks, attacks on science-based management of our public lands, proposals to open up historic forests and local communities to unchecked oil and gas development.
Now it is up to us to protect them for future generations of Michiganders.
Michigan LCV members have been on the front lines, stopping the worst-of-the-worst. Here are just a few recent victories, ongoing fights, and losses(?)
- Keeping the pristine forests of Hartwick Pines State Park free from oil and gas development, despite efforts to auction vulnerable subsurface rights to the highest bidder in late 2014.
- Defeating attempts to undermine scientific management practices (such as managing for biodiversity) in our state parks, forests and recreation areas.
- Speaking out against efforts to undermine protections for our state’s critical sand dunes, which we have continued to advocate against since they went into effect during the summer of 2012.
- Worked closely with conservation partners to reform fishing and hunting license structure, funds from which are used to hire, train and equip Conservation Officers to protect and monitor our state lands.