California legislators stand up again to protect Berryessa Snow Mountain

Zim Zim Falls and lupine. 

Photo courtesy of Yolohiker

The winds of protecting our public lands are blowing across California again; this time at Berryessa Snow Mountain.

Senator Barbara Boxer (D, CA) and Rep. Mike Thompson (D, CA-5) re-introduced legislation to designate the Berryessa Snow Mountain region as a National Conservation Area. The legislation was co-sponsored by Reps. John Garamendi (D, CA-3), Jared Huffman (D, CA-2), Anna Eshoo (D, CA-18) and Ami Bera (D, CA-7).

The Berryessa Snow Mountain National Conservation Area Act (S. 483/H.R. 1025) would protect roughly 350,000 acres of oak savannah, pine and fir forests, and rivers in northern California. Located close to the Bay Area and Sacramento, the stunning area serves as a home to bald eagles, tule elk, Pacific fishers, trout and a wide variety of rare plants. Additionally, it is a haven for outdoor recreation enthusiasts, which promotes tourism and supports local businesses in surrounding communities.

Legislation to protect Berryessa Snow Mountain failed in the 112th Congress, in the “Worst Congress Ever for Wilderness,” which did not to pass a single wilderness bill.  They were also the first Congress since World War II to not protect a single new acre of public land as a national park, monument or wilderness area.  

We are hopeful that the 113th Congress proves to be different, and thanks to the co-sponsors who value Berryessa Snow Mountain, we are off to a good start. We applaud Sen. Boxer and Reps. Thompson, Garamendi, Huffman, Eshoo and Bera for their dedication to protect America’s great outdoors!

This piece was written by Minji Rachel Kang, a communications intern at The Wilderness Society.