States to receive $95 million for land and water conservation

©U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

States will receive $95 million in fiscal year 2016 from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a federal program which supports land acquisition by local communities, states and federal agencies. The money, which comes from offshore oil and gas revenue, will support local conservation and recreation development projects.

LWCF, which is congressionally authorized for $900 million annually, has only received full funding once since it was established in 1965. In 2015, LWCF briefly expired, but was temporarily reauthorized until 2018. On Wednesday, April 20, the Senate voted to permanently reauthorize LWCF as part of the Energy Policy Modernization Act.

While the LWCF provision in the Senate’s energy bill represents a big step toward permanent reauthorization, it must still be approved by the House of Representatives before the president can sign it into law.

For more information on state allocations, see the Department of Interior’s press release.