Liberty Bell in San Juan Wilderness of Colorado.
Pat yourself on the back if you sent Congress a letter in support of wilderness and wildlands protections last month. Thanks to you and our other WildAlert members, we are much better positioned for scoring wildlands victories in what is expected to be a very active post-electoral session of Congress.
Right now 20 different wilderness and wildlands bills to protect a spectacular array of natural areas throughout the nation are at the steps of Congress.
The 20 bills seek to preserve wildlands in 12 different states—a total of almost 2 million acres of Wilderness designations and 2 million acres of other wildlands protections from coast to coast. These are places that could be threatened by harmful activities, such as oil drilling and other human development if not protected.
Eye-dazzling mountains in Colorado’s San Juan range, colorful and otherworldly desert landscapes in California and lush hardwood forests in Tennessee are just some of the special lands that stand to benefit. You can see some of the others in our slideshow here:
We mobilized our members and subscribers in September to take action and help make sure these protections do not fall from our grasp. They sent more than 45,000 letters asking Congress to put a priority on passing the wilderness and wildlands bills before the next Congress is sworn in next January.
Our efforts to advocate for these bills continue throughout the rest of the year and into the January. If you haven’t taken action, you can still write a letter to Congress to protect these special wildlands and our natural heritage.
All of the lands to be protected are American gems. From lush, ancient forests in Oregon to large-than-life mountain lands in Montana, these are stunning and iconic places that our children and grandchildren deserve to know. And, of course, protecting these places also benefits us here and now by ensuring our best places for solace and quiet outdoor recreation are left intact and that they can continue to perform the critical services of cleaning our air and water.
The process of crafting successful wildland legislation is a long, intricate and collaborative process that can take years or even decades to advance. That’s why these important bills must make it to the floor—and be passed—before a new Congress begins in January.
If they do not, the long legislative process begins again with a new Congress, and there is no guarantee how friendly the next Congress will be to wilderness protection.
photo: Liberty Bell in San Juan Wilderness of Colorado.