Land & Water Conservation Fund

The LWCF is a critical tool in providing healthy places for children to play, and families to vacation.

It protects God’s majesty in the mountains, rivers, deserts and other breathtaking landscapes of our nation for the next generation to enjoy. We have a moral responsibility to taxpayers, our communities, and future generations to fund LWCF.

In 1965, Congress created the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) using a portion of royalties paid by oil and gas companies drilling offshore with the intent to balance the depletion of one resource by protecting another. Today, the program is the federal government’s primary tool to protect national parks, national forests, and national wildlife refuges.

LWCF helps landowners and foresters to preserve working landscapes; provides access for hunters and anglers, and makes available matching grants for small towns and big cities alike to build local parks and recreational facilities for youth and families. Over the last five decades, LWCF funding has benefited nearly every county in America.

Oil and gas royalties generated by drilling activities in the Outer Continental Shelf exceed $6 billion annually. By law, LWCF is capped at $900 million annually but has only been fully funded once; Congress redirects most of the $900 million to other domestic priorities nearly every year and is not held accountable for doing so. 
President Obama’s fiscal year 2014 budget proposed directing $600 million from oil and gas royalties to LWCF. The President also proposed that the program receive the intended $900 million in FY 2015. The U.S. Senate Appropriation Subcommittee’s fiscal year 2014 budget included $400 million for LWCF; the U.S. House budget included only $20 million.

A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators, including Senators Mark Udall and Tom Udall, have also been working to reauthorize the program legislatively and ensure LWCF is consistently funded at $900 million annually.

Key Decision Makers

Secretary Sally Jewell
P: 202-208-3100
Online Contact Form

Senator Diane Feinstein
P: 202-224-3841
Online Contact Form

Senator Barbara Boxer
P: 202-224-3553
Online Contact Form

Senator Mark Udall
P: 202-224-5941
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Senator Michael Bennet
P: 202-224-5852
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Senator Tom Udall
P: 202-224-6621
Online Contact Form

Senator Martin Heinrich
P: 202-224-5521
Online Contact Form