Confluence Of States Welcomes Massachusetts And Pennsylvania

Two states have signed the Confluence Accords in a bipartisan effort to support outdoor recreation

Washington, D.C. – Outdoor recreation leaders from Massachusetts and Pennsylvania committed to advance the principles contained in the Outdoor Recreation Industry Confluence Accords, on behalf of their governors, at a signing on May 7, 2024, at the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable’s National Outdoor Recreation Executive Forum. With the addition of Massachusetts, authorized by Governor Maura Healey, and Pennsylvania, authorized by Governor Josh Shapiro, the total number of states in the Confluence reaches a historic 18.

The National Outdoor Recreation Executive Forum was the outdoor recreation industry’s first-ever, cross-segment CEO-level event. The purpose of the Forum was to bring together executives from across the industry’s many segments with agency leaders, state recreation directors, and policy makers to identify challenges and opportunities facing the $1.1 trillion outdoor recreation economy and drive collective goals and strategies forward.

The Confluence Accords embody 12 principles contained in the four pillars of conservation and stewardship, education and workforce training, economic development, and public health and wellness. They were developed in 2018 to promote and advance best practices for all states to sustainably grow their outdoor recreation economies.  

The original Confluence Accord signatories were outdoor recreation directors from the states of Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming on behalf of their governors on July 25, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. The second signing included Maine, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, and Virginia on October 24, 2019 in Saint George, Utah. The third signing included Arkansas, Maryland, and New Hampshire on May 26, 2022 in Little Rock, Arkansas.

“Massachusetts and Pennsylvania’s entrance into the Confluence of States marks a historic chapter in our coalition,” said Katherine Andrews, 2024 Chair of the Confluence of States and Director of the Arkansas Office of Outdoor Recreation. “Both states bring invaluable perspectives and resources to our collective efforts in enhancing outdoor recreation. Massachusetts, with its historical landmarks and coastal beauty, alongside Pennsylvania, with its vast forests and storied trails. Together, we’ll continue to grow outdoor recreation as a shared priority, driving economic, environmental, and social well-being across the country.”

“We are thrilled to sign the Confluence Accords and affirm our commitment in Pennsylvania to growing our outdoor economy and harnessing its power for economic and workforce development, public health, and conservation,” said Nathan Reigner, Director of the Pennsylvania Office of Outdoor Recreation. “With the full support of Governor Shapiro and the widespread enthusiasm of Pennsylvania’s outdoor industry and economic development community, Pennsylvania is excited to join the national leadership uniting, growing, and strengthening our outdoor economy.”

“Outdoor recreation is an essential part of living and visiting Massachusetts, and we are thrilled to join our state partners as a new member of the Confluence of States,” said MOOR Director Paul Jahnige. “Massachusetts is blessed with vibrant trail systems, diverse wildlife, and outdoor adventures of all kinds. Through the Confluence of States, we look forward to amplifying our collective voice to advance outdoor recreation and protect our natural resources.” 

“Pennsylvania’s and Massachusetts’ formal commitment to the Confluence of States is testament to the groundswell of support for outdoor recreation as a driver of resilient state economies, connector of communities, and boon to public health” said Chris Perkins, Vice President of Programs at Outdoor Recreation Roundtable. “The $1.1 trillion outdoor recreation economy is better off with robust state leadership for outdoor recreation initiatives and investments, and we are proud to have showcased these directors and the Confluence of States at our National Outdoor Recreation Executive Forum.” 

Outdoor recreation is an economic engine that creates jobs and sustains state and local economies throughout the United States. In its most recent data, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that outdoor recreation makes up 2.2 percent of U.S. GDP, generating $1.1 trillion in gross output and supporting 5 million jobs. 

The Outdoor Recreation Roundtable (ORR) is America’s leading coalition of outdoor recreation trade associations and organizations working to promote the growth of the outdoor recreation economy and outdoor recreation activities. 

The Confluence of States is a bipartisan organization developing a national platform to grow the outdoor recreation industry, protect our nation’s wild places and transform conservation into a driver for economic prosperity.

Keep your finger on the fishing industry pulse

The Definititive News Source of the Fishing & Marine Industry