Thursday, June 2, 2011

Bowing to political opposition from right-wing members of Congress, the Obama Administration seems to be moving away from its landmark Wild Lands Policy, put in place just seven months ago

 



Today, the Department of Interior took a major step backward on wilderness protection.  Bowing to political opposition from right-wing members of Congress, the Administration seems to be moving away from its landmark Wild Lands Policy, put in place just seven months ago. 

Today’s announcement from the Department of Interior strongly hints that this Administration may no longer make wilderness protection a priority.
Take action now and tell the Administration that wilderness protection is a priority for you – and should be for this Administration!
The lands at risk are some of the West’s most iconic landscapes, including South Shale Ridge in Colorado, areas within Utah’s red rock canyon country, Otero Mesa in New Mexico, and Adobe Town in Wyoming.  Together, millions of acres of wilderness-quality lands are now at added risk of development.
With our open spaces under attack from all sides, now is not the time for the Department of Interior to back down. It is the Department of Interior’s job to manage our public lands, including safeguarding wilderness.
These lands must be protected from oil and gas development, off road vehicle use and other exploitation until they win permanent protection through an Act of Congress. 
Make that clear now with an email to Interior Secretary Salazar.
The Wild Lands Policy put in place clear guidelines for the BLM to manage wilderness quality lands.  Those guidelines appear to have been abandoned – at least for now.  Instead,  Interior pledged today to gain input on wilderness protection and management from “members of Congress, state and local officials, tribes and federal land managers.”  Stunningly, the word “public” is not on the list of stakeholders Interior intends to consult.

These lands belong to the public – you and me – and our involvement on management decisions was sealed years ago with the passage of the Federal Land Management and Policy Act – FLPMA, still in effect today.

Tell Interior Secretary Salazar that the public must be part of the decision making for the future of America’s western wilderness.
Please, help us ensure that the Obama Administration hears that such a retreat on wildlands protection will not be tolerated.  Send your email now.
Sincerely,
Kathy Kilmer

The Wilderness Society
202.833.2300
1615 M St, NW, Washington, DC 20036
www.wilderness.org
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As Jim Hightower explains it, is that “the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans possess more net worth today than the bottom 90 percent of us combined. Worse, these privileged few and their political henchmen have structured a new economic ‘normal’ of long-term joblessness, low wages, no benefits or worker rights, miserly public services, and a steadily widening chasm between the rich and the rest of us.” We must restore sanity to this nation.