The Outside Voting Guide

How to Vote for the Outdoors

Non-partisan midterm elections guidance from key environmental organizations

Remember when conserving our nation's public lands, environment, air and water, and animals was a bi-partisan thing? Well, those were the good ol' days. You know what you need to do this fall. (Illustration: Wes Siler)
Remember when conserving our nation's public lands, environment, air and water, and animals was a bi-partisan thing? Well, those were the good ol' days. You know what you need to do this fall.

Your vote this fall matters more than ever. But how should you cast it if you care about the outdoors? Here, we’ve assembled a handy state-by-state guide with recommendations from respected conservation, environmental, public lands, and outdoor-rec groups. They cover both individual candidates and ballot initiatives. 

But first, you need to register and find your polling station. That varies by state, but you’ll find a comprehensive guide, covering everything you need to know to make sure your vote gets counted right here. 


The Environmentalists

Who: The League of Conservation Voters

What: The LCV “works to elect candidates who will support common-sense environmental policies.”

How: LCV endorses candidates from both parties who support initiatives to address climate change, protect public lands, and provide clean air and water to all Americans. LCV also publishes “dirty dozen” lists for politicians from both parties who work against these interests

LCV provides detailed information on how each of the candidates it has endorsed have worked to protect the environment. 

The Outdoor Industry

Who: The Outdoor Industry Association

What: OIA represents the $887-billion outdoor recreation industry and the public lands necessary for that industry to do business. 

How: OIA endorses candidates from both parties who support outdoor recreation businesses in their districts, protect public lands, fight for public access to the outdoors, support balanced trade, and acknowledge the threat of climate change. 

OIA provides in-depth information on candidates’ position state-by-state and even for individual congressional districts. 

The Locals

Who: The Trust for Public Land

What: TPL “helps local communities design and pass ballot measures that create new public funds for parks and land conservation.”

How: TPL provides voters with details of local land conservation measures on state ballots. 

TPL highlights public land ballot measures state-by-state, provides an easy summary of them, and directs you to more information. 

The Conservationists

Who: Backcountry Hunters and Anglers

What: BHA represents conservation-minded hunters and fishermen, and advocates for public land protections, public access, and animal conservation. 

How: BHA is “releasing a series of state-based questionnaires that highlight the stances taken by candidates running for elected office on issues affecting our natural resources.”

BHA polls individual candidates for their takes on broad ideas and individual laws. Its election guidance is still rolling out and will include more states and politicians in the coming days. 

Our mission to inspire readers to get outside has never been more critical. In recent years, Outside Online has reported on groundbreaking research linking time in nature to improved mental and physical health, and we’ve kept you informed about the unprecedented threats to America’s public lands. Our rigorous coverage helps spark important debates about wellness and travel and adventure, and it provides readers an accessible gateway to new outdoor passions. Time outside is essential—and we can help you make the most of it. Making a financial contribution to Outside Online only takes a few minutes and will ensure we can continue supplying the trailblazing, informative journalism that readers like you depend on. We hope you’ll support us. Thank you.
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Filed To: ConservationPublic LandsClimate ChangeEnvironmentPolitics
Lead Illustration: Wes Siler
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