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Advocacy

Obstacles arise every day that threaten the Appalachian Trail. We're here to protect it.

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protecting the a.t. experience

We care about protecting the experience we all have while hiking the Appalachian Trail (A.T.). Along with our partners, we are charged under the National Trails Act to ensure that the scenic vistas and natural and cultural heritage of the Trail corridor is protected forever.

We have advocated for dedicated funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund since 1972. Through our advocacy efforts and partnerships with the U.S. Forest Service, the National Park Service and multiple state agencies, more than $180 million dollars has been appropriated to secure a land base for the A.T. and to protect landscapes near the Trail.

Congressional Appalachian National Scenic Trail Caucus

The Congressional Appalachian National Scenic Trail Caucus was formed to unite Members of Congress who wish to work together for the sustained protection and conservation of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (A.T.). Over half of the American population lives within a day’s travel to the Trail, and it unites countless communities over its 2,190+ miles. The Caucus Co-Chairs and founders, Representative Don Beyer (VA-08) and Representative Phil Roe (TN-01) are avid A.T. hikers and champions. The ATC is honored by their leadership in the U.S. House on Trail issues. 

The Caucus provides a venue for Members and their staff to quickly gain important information regarding Trail goings-on and ATC priorities, encourage rural economic development anchored by outdoor recreation in the “wild” A.T. Corridor, and is a convening space for Members who are interested/engaged in improving public lands (specifically trail lands). Is your U.S. Representative a member of the Caucus?

Don’t know who your Representative is? Check here!

Power lines on the Appalachian Trail

threats

Incompatible development near the A.T. threatens the intent of a national scenic trail as outlined in the National Trails Act. Such development potentially impacts the hiking experience and fragile landscapes surrounding the Trail. These developments may include expanded electric transmission corridors, new or expanded highways and roads, and poorly sited industrial wind farms and large scale natural gas pipelines, among others. 

We work to educate local leaders about these threats to the Trail in an effort to avoid or mitigate negative impacts. We also work closely with state and federal agencies to ensure effective policies are developed to protect Trail resources.

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