Can exposure and access to nature give a boost to human health? That question was front and center at the EarthLab Center for Creative Conservation’s recently convened Northwest Nature and Health Symposium. On tap for the day were leaders in education, planning and conservation — including former secretary of the interior Sally Jewell — all exploring the health benefits that come with being outside. Topics ranged from the latest innovations in research, policy and practice to a discussion of opportunities to expand the potential of nature to improve our health. The day ended with Secretary Jewell giving the inaugural Doug Walker Lecture on nature and health to a packed house in Seattle’s Benaroya Hall.
In a testament to the power of connecting nature to human health, a story ran in the Seattle Times the day following the symposium highlighting an Army veteran’s search for healing by hiking from Mexico to Canada. EarthLab and Center for Creative Conservation leadership wrote a Letter to the Editor, affirming the restorative value of nature and advocating that access to nature be made equally available to everyone.Read published letter from EarthLab in the Seattle Times