FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Katie Test, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
CELEBRATE EARTH DAY ON A RAIL-TRAIL:
Visit one of America's ultimate recycling projects!
WASHINGTON, D.C.—This Earth Day, celebrate one of America's most unique and creative recycling projects—the rail-trail. What was once an unused railroad line can be recycled to provide communities with places to bike, walk, run, ski, horseback ride and more. Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is a nonprofit organization enhancing the health of America's environment, economy, neighborhoods and people by working with communities to transform unused rail corridors into trails. When Rails-to-Trails Conservancy opened its doors in February 1986, there were only 250 known miles of rail-trails. Now, the United States has more than 15,000 miles of rail-trail with another 11,000 miles in development.
"Rails-to-Trails Conservancy works to adapt and preserve old rail corridors, reusing the space for recreation and commuting trails that benefit the greater public. Isn't that really what recycling is all about?" says Keith Laughlin, president of Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. "I'm proud that we're a leader in a conservation movement that builds healthier places for healthier people."
Not only are rail-trails a great way to celebrate Earth Day, they are an ideal place to make the lifestyle change that Earth Day signifies. Offset your carbon footprint by substituting your bicycle for your car on shorter trips—a three-mile trip takes the average bicyclist 20 minutes. Use your local trail to commute to work once a week, head to the grocery store on two wheels or enjoy a brisk walk to shopping centers over the weekend. This minor swap is both exciting and encourages active living in the spirit of Earth Day.
Additionally, with national gas prices soaring to more than $3 a gallon and no relief in sight, many are looking to alternative transportation options to give their wounded wallets a much needed break. Rails-to-Trails Conservancy encourages those feeling the pinch at the pump to hit the nearest rail-trail, where a bicycle ride, walk or skate could lead to a few extra bucks and a few less pounds.
Find a rail-trail near you by visiting Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's Web site at www.railstotrails.org and click on "find a trail." You can search for rail-trails in your area by selecting your state or entering your zip code. Register and access free trail maps, and write reviews and post pictures of your trail experience on Earth Day.
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization with more than 100,000 members, is the nation's largest trails organization dedicated to connecting people and communities by creating a nationwide network of public trails, many from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Founded in 1986, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy's national office is located in Washington, D.C., with regional offices in California, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. For more information visit www.railstotrails.org.