Quantcast

National Public Lands Day Sept. 29

National Environmental Education Foundation

More than 170,000 volunteers are expected at more than 2,100 sites across the country on Saturday, Sept. 29 to take part in the largest single-day volunteer effort for public lands in the U.S.—National Public Lands Day (NPLD).

Volunteers in every state will visit parks, public and community gardens, beaches, wildlife preserves or forests and chip in to help these treasured places that belong to all Americans. They will improve and restore the lands and facilities the public uses for recreation, education, exercise and connecting with nature.

The co-founder of EarthEcho International and acclaimed naturalist Philippe Cousteau encourages volunteers from across the country to head to their nearby public lands to lend a hand.

“With one-third of America's land in public hands, NPLD provides an opportunity for volunteers of all ages to help sustain these lands,” said Robb Hampton, director of the public lands program of the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF), which coordinates NPLD. “Volunteers can also spend time after their tasks to enjoy the lands, whether at a local green space or national park. Many sites offer nature hikes, bike rides, picnics or other outdoor activities.”

JL Armstrong, NEEF board member and national manager, corporate affairs at Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc., said, “NPLD involves thousands of volunteers making a difference in cities and towns across the nation while participating in outdoor activities. We encourage everyone, particularly families and service groups, to join their neighbors on NPLD to make their communities the best they can be.”

With a long-standing commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship, Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc. is the event’s national sponsor for the 14th consecutive year. Northrop Grumman has joined as a contributing sponsor for the fourth consecutive year. Sept. 29 marks the event’s 19th year.

The event last year contributed an estimated $17 million in volunteer services to public lands, which included planting about 100,000 trees, shrubs and other native plants, as well as building and maintaining approximately 1,500 miles of trails.

Volunteers have unique opportunities to choose from, including:

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site, Atlanta, Ga.–As part of Georgia’s “Your State Parks Day,” volunteers will restore historic houses, clear debris and help mulch. Atlanta’s nonprofit Greening Youth Foundation will also hold a youth campout barbecue the evening before NPLD.
  • Globe Building Discovery Center, Detroit, Mich.–The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is hosting the groundbreaking of the Globe Building, a 50,000 sq. ft. indoor exploration center for outdoor recreation along the Detroit Riverfront. The groundbreaking is part of Michigan Trails Week with statewide volunteer opportunities.
  • Elgin Community Gardens, Elgin, Ill.–Twenty-one community gardens throughout the city will be participating in NPLD. The gardens will harvest food and donate it to crisis centers, soup kettles, homeless shelters and food pantries.
  • The Emerson Brook Forest Center, Gilsum, N.H.–The Sustainability Project, a local nonprofit, is inviting volunteers to create wheelchair-accessible gardens and trails surrounding a vernal pool. Keene State College Ecology Club and student organizations are expected to participate.
  • Deschutes National Forest, Whychus Creek, near Sisters, Ore.–The U.S. Forest Service, National Forest Foundation, and REI Bend store will host a variety of family-friendly conservation projects along the creek. Half-day projects include planting, scattering native seeds and more. All volunteer projects finish by 2 p.m., leaving time to explore, fish and enjoy other activities.

Events in every state, the District of Columbia and many U.S. territories can be found online, searchable by state or zip code. Eight federal agencies will participate—along with more than 250 state, county and city partners, and a host of nonprofit organizations around the nation.

NPLD is also a designated fee-free entrance day at many federal public lands including national parks.

Visit EcoWatch’s BIODIVERSITY page for more related news on this topic.

 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A baby burrowing owl perched outside its burrow on Marco Island, Florida. LagunaticPhoto / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Burrowing owls, which make their homes in small holes in the ground, are having a rough time in Florida. That's why Marco Island on the Gulf Coast passed a resolution to pay residents $250 to start an owl burrow in their front yard, as the Marco Eagle reported.

Read More
Amazon and other tech employees participate in the Global Climate Strike on Sept. 20, 2019 in Seattle, Washington. Amazon Employees for Climate Justice continue to protest today. Karen Ducey / Getty Images

Hundreds of Amazon workers publicly criticized the company's climate policies Sunday, showing open defiance of the company following its threats earlier this month to fire workers who speak out on climate change.

Read More
Sponsored
Locusts swarm from ground vegetation as people approach at Lerata village, near Archers Post in Samburu county, approximately 186 miles north of Nairobi, Kenya on Jan. 22. "Ravenous swarms" of desert locusts in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia threaten to ravage the entire East Africa subregion, the UN warned on Jan. 20. TONY KARUMBA / AFP / Getty Images

East Africa is facing its worst locust infestation in decades, and the climate crisis is partly to blame.

Read More
The Antarctic Peninsula on Feb. 28, 2019. Daniel Enchev / Flickr

By Dan Morgan

Antarctica is the remotest part of the world, but it is a hub of scientific discovery, international diplomacy and environmental change. It was officially discovered 200 years ago, on Jan. 27, 1820, when members of a Russian expedition sighted land in what is now known as the Fimbul Ice Shelf on the continent's east side.

Read More
The seafood market in Wuhan, China that has been linked to the spread of the new coronavirus. HECTOR RETAMAL / AFP via Getty Images

China banned its trade in wild animals Sunday until the new coronavirus, which was linked to a market in Wuhan where wildlife was sold, is eradicated. Now, conservationists are calling on the country to make the ban permanent.

Read More