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Old 11-30-2011, 04:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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NREPA Threat - 23 Million Acres Still at Risk

Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act (NREPA)

Northern Rockies Protection Act introduced, details still pending

by Dennis Bragg (KPAX/KAJ Media Center)

WASHINGTON, DC- Democrats in Congress are taking another run at protecting millions of acres of roadless land in the Northern Rockies and Northwest as wilderness. But at this point we're still waiting for details to see how many acres of Montana land could be included in the proposal.

Last week, Representative Carolyn Malony of New York introduced the latest version of the controversial Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act, a bill that would extend wilderness protection to 23 million acres of "roadless" areas. Those are lands managed by agencies like the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management that have been studied and managed for decades as "proposed wilderness" but never given full protection.

"These lands remain in much the same condition as when Lewis & Clark explored them more than 200 years ago," said Rep. Maloney. "And they still contain a wealth of native species and wildlife. We must do everything possible to preserve natural habitats in the Northern Rockies so these wilderness areas can be enjoyed by future generations of Americans."

The bill has the full support of Montana-based Alliance for the Wild Rockies.

Mike Garrity, Executive Director of the Alliance for the Wild Rockies says "NREPA protects entire ecosystems, critical wildlife migration corridors and provides connectivity to segmented lands inhabited by threatened and endangered species." He says the proposal is "science, not politics."

"Threats to our treasured public lands and the habitat they provide for native fish and wildlife increase every day," said Arlene Montgomery, Program Director of Friends of the Wild Swan. "NREPA will protect our precious wildlands and wildlife heritage."

Twenty nine Democrats have signed on to the support the bill, which has been introduced to the House Natural Resources Committee. None of the co-sponsors are from the Northern Rockies or Northwest states. Republican Representative Doc Hastings from Eastern Washington chairs the committee. That's where some of the proposed wilderness has been located in past bills.

At this point, the text of the legislation hasn't been released yet. But past versions of NREPA have included land in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and Eastern Washington and Oregon. The most recent version, which failed to get out of committee two years ago, would have protected 24-million acres, with 7.5 million acres of that in Montana.

Proposed act here: http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h980/show



Source Provider: http://www.sharetrails.org/public-lands/recnews

Source: http://www.kpax.com/news/northern-ro...still-pending/


BRC Comments

Greetings Rec News Subscribers!

We only have one news clip today. I was honored to be on a local radio show here in Idaho (Zeb at the Ranch with host Zeb Bell) and was asked about the Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act (NREPA). Zeb just couldn't believe that all that land here in Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Washington and Wyoming was going to be locked up, and not one single sponsor of the bill is from any of these states.

Ric was listening back at the office and whipped up a nice graphic showing where all that 23 million acres of new Wilderness is located (in green), and which states the sponsor and co-sponsors are from (in red). (As of 11/30/2011 @ 3:50 PDT - graphic not yet published)

The sponsor of this bill, by the way, lives in New York City, NY.

This bill has been described as the modern incarnation of the Wildlands Project, an ambitious proposal first conceived by Dave Foreman, the founder of Earth First!. The Wildlands Project would "re-wild" approximately half of North America by outlawing most human use and occupancy.

This large multi-state Wilderness bill is a behemoth, if you want to see how bad this bill is, visit Alliance for the Wild Rockies website and check out the NREPA maps. http://www.wildrockiesalliance.org/i...epa/index.html

Last edited by LYIN' KING; 11-30-2011 at 04:52 PM. Reason: add link
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