The National Park Service (NPS) has joined several federal agencies and private organizations on what the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) is calling “an unprecedented memorandum of understanding” calling for the development and expansion of activities to promote recreational fishing and boating conducted on public lands and waterways.

According to the NMMA, participating parties will work towards goals such as increased volunteerism on public lands, improved quality of aquatic and riparian resources, improved recreational fishing experiences, and increased educational programs for recreational fishing and fisheries.

“The National Park Service welcomes more than 300 million visitors to national parks each year, many of whom come to spend time on the water,” said National Park Service Deputy Director Dan Smith. “Working with these organizations helps us generate more awareness of park resources and water recreation.”

The NPS commitment to joining the effort comes at a critical time. Participation in fishing has increased for the second straight year, according to the 2018 Special Report on Fishing. Key target audiences including Hispanics, youth, and women are all showing positive trends, placing an added focus on innovative methods to keeping new and diverse audiences engaged in the activity.