Groups from across the United States want Congress to protect our public lands

Alpine Lakes in Washington. Courtesy USFS.

A diverse coalition of 173 public interest groups from 41 states — including The Wilderness Society — sent a letter to House and Senate leadership, asking them to prioritize land, water and wildlife bills during the lame duck session this year.

The Wilderness Society is advocating for 21 wildland and Wilderness bills that would protect a total of almost 2 million acres of Wilderness designations and 2 million acres of other wildlands protections from coast to coast.

The suite of bills would establish new parks, monuments, wilderness, battlefields and heritage areas; support water supply and conservation projects and protect key river segments; facilitate necessary land exchanges and conveyances; and improve the management of America’s public lands.

In the letter, the coalition of 173 groups communicate to Majority Leader Reid, Speaker Pelosi, Minority Leader McConnell, and Minority Leader Boehner that, “these bills are the result of extensive collaboration and enjoy broad support from local elected officials, non-profit organizations, businesses, and other community leaders.”

As development continues to threaten our natural, cultural, and historic treasures, we must remember that public land protections provide rural communities stable and permanent sources of economic growth.

The Wilderness Society encourages you to join us in contacting your Senators to support a comprehensive omnibus lands bill that will protect important cultural, historical, and wild resources for the future. The wellbeing of our natural heritage depends on each generation contributing to the protection of water, air, land, and wildlife. Help us make the Omnibus lands bill of 2010 a reality and preserve the future of nature.

photo: Alpine Lakes in Washington. Courtesy USFS.