Statement from the Ohio Environmental Council on the Potential Purchase of ReCreation Lands by the State of Ohio

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) announced an initial plan to purchase ReCreation lands in eastern Ohio from American Electric Power (AEP). The first 7,000 acre purchase would be part of a larger 60,000 acre tract of reclaimed mines, which AEP has indicated they are willing to sell.

The following statement can be attributed in full, or in part to Heather Taylor-Miesle, Executive Director of the Ohio Environmental Council (OEC):

“The OEC, working alongside many of our conservation partners, have long been advocating for public ownership of this important outdoor space. The State of Ohio’s announcement is a positive and heartening first step to ensure these lands are available for future public use. We are eager to learn the details of this exciting, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to increase public land ownership and access to the wild outdoors.

“This purchase will benefit all Ohioans who love the outdoors, hikers, bikers, hunters, anglers, birders, campers – you name it. We applaud Governor Kasich and the ODNR for taking this important initiative, and we urge the State to ensure that every mile of trail, every fishing pond, and every wildlife habitat will be a place where all of Ohio’s residents can enjoy nature.”

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