Michigan joins multi-state compact on outdoor recreation

    Kayaking at Sleepy Hollow State Park | Susan J. Demas

    Michigan has joined 12 other states in a commitment to public health conservation, stewardship and education. 

    Officials at the Utah Outdoor Recreation Summit signed the commitment on behalf of their state governors on Thursday, according to a joint statement from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the National Governors Association.

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    The agreement contains 12 principles known as the Confluence Accords and includes commitments to address issues releated to public health, creating bridges between stakeholders, support educational opportunities and instill stewardship in the state.

    A network of shared outreach resources and collaboration has formed between the states involved, the statement said. Original participants in the network are Washington  Montana, Colorado, Vermont, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming.

    Michigan, Nevada, Maine, Virginia and New Mexico joined the agreement on Thursday. The DNR released a statement from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer who said this partnership of states will help Michigan be a leader in the outdoor recreation economy.

    Gov. Gretchen Whitmer at the Lansing 9/11 memorial service, Sept. 11, 2019 | Nick Manes

    “From the Great Lakes to our expansive forest lands to a vast network of trails, Michigan boasts unparalleled natural resources and countless opportunities for outdoor recreation,” said Whitmer. 

    “Our state is well-positioned to be a leader in this new effort to support and promote the outdoor recreation economy,” she continued. By partnering with a consortium of states dedicated to promoting the outdoor recreation industry, we will make sure that our work aligns with others who share our values in prioritizing conservation and stewardship, health and wellness, growing our workforce and strengthening our economy.”

    Anna Liz Nichols
    Anna Liz Nichols covers criminal justice, the environment and the Legislature. She has reported for several publications, including MLive and Michigan State University’s award-winning student paper, the State News, where she covered the many tendrils of the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal. She is finishing up a degree in journalism and environmental studies at Michigan State University, graduating May 2020.