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Public Opinion on Natural Resource Conservation in Wyoming Published

October 22, 2014

“Public Opinion on Natural Resource Conservation in Wyoming” is now available from the Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Wyoming.

This latest publication of the Wyoming Open Spaces Initiative provides results from a recent statewide poll of 500 likely voters on topics related to conservation and natural resources in the state. The poll was commissioned through a partnership of the Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources, the Wyoming Stock Growers Association, the Wyoming Stock Growers Land Trust and the Nature Conservancy in Wyoming.

Download the publication at, request a hard copy at or call (307) 766-5146.

The poll shows that Wyoming voters have a strong interest in conservation and favor dedicating additional state funds to protect land, air, water, wildlife habitat and ranchlands in Wyoming. A majority of poll respondents supported additional funding for the Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust, a fund created by the Wyoming State Legislature in 2005 to support natural resource conservation in the state. Respondents also ranked open space and wildlife conservation as equally, if not more, important to them as other issues such as dependence on foreign oil and quality of public education.

“This poll confirms what we’ve long known about Wyoming residents -- that most care deeply about open spaces, wildlife, land and water resources. What was a bit unexpected from the poll was a strong willingness to fund natural resource conservation even during tougher economic times,” says Nicole Korfanta, director of the Ruckelshaus Institute and co-author of the publication.

The Wyoming Open Spaces Initiative is a collaborative effort of the Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources, the Wyoming Geographic Information Science Center, the Department of Agriculture and Applied Economics, the Department of Geography, UW Extension, and the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database.

The initiative supports Wyoming citizens' conservation of open spaces through research, information, education and decision-making assistance. The research group considers agricultural sustainability, community planning and development, wildlife, and other related cultural, economic and environmental issues of importance to Wyoming.

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