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|Originally Posted: 8 December 2009|
Protect the Redrock Wilderness
Tell Interior Secretary Salazar to rescind the Norton-Leavitt "no more wilderness" Bush-era policy.
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INFORMATION / TALKING POINTS
Please overturn the Bush-era policy that prohibits the BLM from properly protecting lands that are wild and pristine as wilderness study areas. Under your leadership, the Department of the Interior has already made significant improvements in how the majestic public lands of Utah's Redrock country are managed on behalf of the American people. In particular, I want to thank you for taking steps to prevent oil and gas drilling on the doorstep of our national parks and for taking a hard look at improvements needed in federal leasing guidelines.
But many of Utah's most magnificent wilderness lands are still in harm's way because of a legacy from the Bush Administration -- the Norton-Leavitt "no more wilderness" policy. Because this ill-advised policy remains in effect, many of the country's last wild places remain under constant threat. Even lands that have been acknowledged as having wilderness qualities and have been proposed for Congressional wilderness designation are at risk from irresponsible energy development and out of control off-road vehicle use. Wilderness represents the best of America, but its loss is permanent and irreversible.
I call on you to ensure the protection of Utah's wilderness-quality lands until Congress acts to formally designate their protection. Please rescind the Norton-Leavitt "no more wilderness" policy and restore the BLM's ability to designate new wilderness study areas in Utah. Wilderness is an irreplaceable part of our national landscape and without protection, reckless industrial development will destroy it forever. You have already made important strides in protecting wilderness in Utah. Please maintain that commitment by protecting more wilderness-quality lands.
Thank you for everything you do for animals!