Waterfowl advocates already know the value and effectiveness of the NAWCA program, but we need to share that knowledge with Congress so they will continue to fund the program this year at the FY2012 enacted level of $35.5 million.
The U.S. has lost approximately 52 percent of its original wetlands, and in recent years the rate of wetland loss has increased 140 percent. NAWCA is helping to slow this trend of wetland loss.
Tell your House representatives:
- The program creates jobs and stimulates the economy. Wildlife-related recreation generates more than $120 billion of economic output each year. In many cases, this economic activity is vital to the incomes of rural Americans. One study suggests NAWCA directly spurs the creation, on average, of 3,800 new jobs annually in the United States. These jobs cannot be exported, and they generate nearly $840 million in worker earnings each year.
- NAWCA is a voluntary and non-regulatory conservation program. Farmers, ranchers and other private landowners support the program, and every project is voluntary. Incentives allow willing landowners to restore wildlife habitat and conservation practices to their private lands.
- NAWCA fosters conservation efforts by the non-federal sector. More than 4,400 corporate, small business, non-profit, state and local entities have tripled NAWCA dollars by providing matching funds. The average partner match is 3:1. NAWCA benefits the national economy by translating $411 million in federal appropriations to $3.5 billion in additional economic activity in the United States.
- Congress is involved in approving which projects are funded. The final approval body in the project selection process is the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission. The seven-member body includes four members of Congress.
- NAWCA has strong support from the states. The 50 state wildlife agencies are active partners in the program.
- Demand for NAWCA continues to exceed available funds. Demand annually for the program in the United States outstrips available funding. NAWCA remains a very popular program among landowners interested and willing to restore and conserve wetlands habitat.
You can reach your U.S. House representatives’ offices by calling (202) 224-3121, or send the email below.