Congress proposes more reckless spending cuts to wild lands and wildlife

Washington's Lake Serene forest trail could be on the chopping block as cuts to the Legacy Roads and Trails program threaten to derail previous successes.

NullSynapse, flickr

Earlier this year, the across-the-board budget cuts called “sequestration” started hitting America’s wild parks, wildlife refuges and forests. These cuts left closed campgrounds, shortened visitor hours, less law enforcement and fewer park rangers and fire fighters in its wake.

Now, more of these reckless spending cuts are being proposed in Congress.

Contact your members of Congress today! Don’t let these attacks on wild lands and wildlife continue!

The San Joaquin kit fox could lose precious natural habitat areas as budget cuts affect California's national wildlife refuges. Photo: dfbphotos, flickr

This year’s budget cuts slash even deeper into the programs that keep our wild places and wildlife protected. Examples include:

  • California: Deeper cuts to national wildlife refuges will add to the $30 million backlog of critical habitat maintenance for California’s 34 national wildlife refuges. This threatens habitat for migrating ducks and geese, pronghorn antelope, and endangered species like the San Joaquin kit fox
  • Colorado: The current budget eliminates all funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which would halt the expansion of Colorado’s Uncompaghre National Forest along the scenic San Juan Skyway. Only 55 more acres are needed to complete this 1,100 acre project. If funds are cut, it might never be finished. 
  • Washington: The Pacific Northwest’s mighty forests are on the chopping block as well. Cuts to the Legacy Roads and Trails program threaten to derail previous successes. Even though the program has improved water quality and fixed more than 4,800 miles of forest roads in the Pacific Northwest alone, the 2014 budget eliminates funding for the program completely.

These programs are already suffering devastating cuts from the sequester earlier this year, and further cuts would put some America's greatest places at risk for degradation and destruction.

San Juan Skyway. Photo: Ken Lund, flickr

The Wilderness Society urges you to contact your Congressional representative today to let them know that disastrous cuts proposed to parks, wildlife refuges and forests in the House fiscal year 2014 budget should not be passed into law. 

Contact your members of Congress today! Don’t let these attacks on wild lands and wildlife continue!

We hope Congress will restore funding to the programs that support our national parks, national wildlife fefuges and national forests, such as the Land and Water Conservation Fund and the Legacy Roads and Trails program. It is crucial for America's lawmakers to ensure that clean, renewable energy projects and the National Lands Conservation System are funded at the highest levels possible in this tight budget climate. 

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