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Conservation

All of us in western and central Wisconsin are aware of how important the environment and our state’s beautiful natural resources are to our daily lives. I’m proud to have made responsible stewardship of our natural heritage one of the hallmarks of my work in Congress.I have been particularly focused on sportsmen’s issues, protecting the Mississippi River, and advocating for our National Wildlife Refuge System.

Legislative Successes

  • As an avid hunter and fisherman, I’m passionate about protecting the rights of hunters and anglers across the country so that they can pass the sporting tradition along to their children. I believe that families enjoying nature together paves the way for future conservationists.  That’s why I was proud to see one the bill’s I’ve authored, the Federal Duck Stamp Act of 2014, become law. This legislation increases funding for wetland conservation.

 

  • The Mississippi River is vital to our economy through tourism, recreation, and commercial transport; to the health of our natural environment; and to our very way of life. That is why I founded and co-chair the Upper Mississippi River Basin Congressional Task Force and championed to ensure that the Mississippi River be designated as a Critical Conservation Area under the Farm Bill’s new Regional Conservation Partnership Program. This designation will provide voluntary assistance to farmers, bolster our farm economy, give conservation groups the tools they need to continue preserving and protecting the river, and help create jobs in the Mississippi River basin communities.

 

  • Home to three national wildlife refuges, western and central Wisconsin benefits from billions of dollars these federal lands generate in economic activity. The Upper Mississippi River National Fish and Wildlife Refuge is visited by over 4 million people each year – more than Yellowstone National Park. National Wildlife Refuge System Yet the National Wildlife Refuge System has been critically underfunded for years, causing debilitating maintenance backlogs and loss of visitor access and services. Seeing this unmet need, I founded the Congressional Wildlife Refuge Caucus in 2006 to bring these issues to light and advocate for increased funding for the system.

 

  • I have been a strong supporter of our National Parks system for years, taking my family backpacking in a different park each summer. Truly one of our nation’s greatest treasures, the National Parks have proven to be sound investments for communities, jobs, and future generations. Research shows that every dollar invested in National Parks generates ten dollars in direct economic impact. In 2013 alone, National Park visitors contributed $26.5 billion to the nation’s economy and supported nearly 240,000 jobs. As the upcoming 2016 Centennial of the National Park Service draws near, I am determined to use my leadership role as Co-Chair of the Congressional National Parks Caucus to push for continued investment in the National Park system.

More on Conservation

April 22, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Ron Kind announced that the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point University Child Learning and Care Center was named a 2021 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School. This prestigious award honors schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions for reducing environmental impact and costs, improving health and wellness, and offering effective sustainability education.  

April 14, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC – Yesterday, Rep. Ron Kind, along with 26 other members of Congress, helped introduce comprehensive, bipartisan legislation that aims to protect all Americans and our environment from harmful forever chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

February 9, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC —Today, Rep. Ron Kind announced that he joined his colleagues on the Ways and Means Committee in introducing the Growing Renewable Energy and Efficiency Now (GREEN) Act. The bill would help address climate change by promoting the use of green energy technologies and invest in Wisconsin’s workforce by creating new energy credits for manufacturers and bolstering stable, clean, good-paying jobs. 

January 29, 2021 Press Release

Washington, DC —Today, Rep. Ron Kind joined fellow members of the bipartisan Congressional PFAS Task Force in urging President Biden to take immediate steps to protect communities from harmful per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). PFAS chemicals pose serious health risks, including thyroid, kidney, liver, heart, and reproductive problems. 

December 22, 2020 Press Release

Washington, DC —Last night, Rep. Ron Kind voted to support the year-end package that included a number of priorities he has worked on for Wisconsin families.     

December 8, 2020 Press Release

Washington, DC —Today, Rep. Ron Kind voted for the bipartisan Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), which would authorize the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) to carry out vital water infrastructure projects and studies. The bill would boost our economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic by creating jobs while investing in necessary projects like flood damage reduction, shoreline protection, inland waterways improvement, and ecosystem restoration.

October 1, 2020 Press Release

Washington, DC—Today, Rep. Ron Kind voted for the bipartisan America’s Conservation Enhancement (ACE) Act to protect wildlife and their habitats, and to conserve the natural areas that are so important to Wisconsin’s sportsmen and women. When signed into law, this legislation will conserve wetlands, combat invasive species, and address Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). Earlier this year, Rep.

September 22, 2020 Press Release

Washington, DC —Today, National Parks Caucus co-chairs Reps. Ron Kind (D-WI) and Will Hurd (R-TX) introduced a bipartisan resolution commemorating the 50th anniversary of the National Park Service (NPS) Volunteers-in-Parks program. Since its creation in 1970, the Volunteers-in-Parks program has created countless opportunities for individuals and groups to get involved with our National Park System and contribute to the important work being done.     

August 4, 2020 Press Release

La Crosse, WI —Today, Rep. Ron Kind held a Zoom press conference with Gretchen Benjamin, the Large Rivers Specialist at the Nature Conservancy, to discuss the bipartisan Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), which passed the House of Representatives on July 29, 2020. This legislation would authorize the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to carry out vital water infrastructure projects and studies.

July 22, 2020 Press Release

Washington, DC —Today, Rep. Ron Kind voted for the Great American Outdoors Act, which passed the House of Representatives with bipartisan support. This legislation provides permanent, full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and establishes the National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund to support deferred maintenance projects.