Nick Gale

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) — The state of Illinois wants to hear from you when it comes to natural resources protection and sustainable use, outdoor recreation, and conservation stewardship.

Thoughts and ideas about conservation and the outdoors will flow at the 2013 Illinois Conservation Congress set for September.

In advance of the event, a series of regional meetings are scheduled for February and March.

“Conservation Congress provides Illinois residents with a direct voice to help guide the future of protecting and enhancing the natural resources of our state, and I encourage individuals and organizations who share our passion for conservation and outdoor recreation in Illinois to register today,” said Marc Miller, director Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

The mission of the Illinois Conservation Congress is to give Illinois residents a formal process to propose and advocate actions that can be taken by elected and appointed officials to protect and conserve the natural resources of the State of Illinois. The goal of Conservation Congress is to ensure, through professional management, that sustainable use, recreational opportunities and enjoyment of these resources is available for this and future generations.

The regional meetings are scheduled at:

  • John A. Logan College, Carterville – February 19 and 20
  • Heartland Community College, Normal – February 26 and 27
  • WIU Campus, Quad Cities Campus, Moline – March 4 and 5
  • South Shore Cultural Center, Chicago – March 12, 13 and 14
  • Southwestern Illinois College, Belleville – March 21 and 22


At the evening regional meetings, participants will begin discussing five broad topics to focus Conservation Congress deliberations for action this fall:

  • Sustainable Resource Development and Extraction – mines and minerals, water resources, forestry, etc.
  • Sustainable Resource Harvest – outdoor recreation – wildlife and fish conservation, hunting, fishing, etc.
  • Sustainable Provision of Outdoor Recreation – recreational public access, state parks, etc.
  • Sustainable Resource Protection – regulation, law enforcement, etc.
  • Building Bridges – developing new constituencies, professional development, improving and growing partnerships


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