Thanks for being willing to take action on behalf of our public lands! Here are issues where we could really use your help:
- Sign an open letter telling Congress not to interfere with the Thompson Divide –As you know, the BLM is about to release its final analysis of the 65 illegal leases in and near the Thompson Divide. They are poised to cancel leases in the Divide. Unfortunately, the House Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources and industry interests are trying to hijack the process. Yesterday the House Subcommittee held a hearing on “Opportunities and Challenges of Developing the Mancos Shale Resource, Piceance Basin, western Colorado.” The hearing was focused on a recent USGS report that increased estimates of shale gas in the Piceance Basin—which includes the Thompson Divide and the areas of the White River National Forest where the illegal leases were sold.
- Tell Rep. Tipton his lease exchange bill doesn’t work for our community and does almost nothing to protect the Thompson Divide –Rep. Tipton just announced a draft bill to swap leases in the Thompson Divide for other near Paonia. His draft bill ignores feedback from nearly all counties involved, contains zero protections for either the Thompson Divide or other lands near affected communities and is a near carbon copy of what gas companies proposed last summer. It also would waive significant portions of environmental laws. Simply put it’s a non-starter, sign a letter letting him know!
- Tell BLM to adopt the Settlement Alternative on the Roan Plateau – Right now, you can help protect Colorado’s Roan Plateau by telling the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to adopt a new plan that closes the top of the Plateau to new oil and gas leasing. The Roan is home to dozens of imperiled fish and wildlife species, some of the rarest plants in North America, critical habitat for elk and deer, pristine wild lands, and is a mecca for anglers and hunters. The top of the Plateau is one of the most biologically rich areas in the state, and has been described as comparable in importance to several of our national parks and monuments.
- Tell BLM they’re headed in the right direction but they need to cancel all the leases – The BLM just released a Draft Environmental Impact Statement analyzing the illegal leases in the Thompson Divide. The agency’s proposed action is good; it calls for full or partial cancellation of 25 of those leases inside the Thompson Divide and it would add protections for roadless areas that are leased west of the Divide. The plan is a good step in the right direction, but BLM can and should do better. Sign a letter asking BLM to wipe the slate clean and cancel all the illegally issues leases.
- Thank Sen. Bennet for announcing he’ll work to introduce a wilderness bill to protect the Continental Divide – Senator Michael Bennet just announced he’ll work towards introducing companion legislation to U.S. Congressman Jared Polis’s 2015 Continental Divide Wilderness and Recreation Act. This is a big step forward in the effort to protect lands in Colorado’s Central Mountains in Summit and Eagle counties. Rep. Polis’s bill would protect nearly 60,00 acres of land as wildernes and recreation and conservation management areas. Sign a thank you note to Sen Bennet toady.
- Become a Wilderness Workshop activist – To protect our beloved backcountry and wildlands, including places like the Thompson Divide and the Central Mountains, it’s going to take a citizens’ movement! That’s where you come in. It’s going to take creative, attention-getting and sometimes massive displays of public support to make our message heard all the way to DC. It also takes lots of little action that add up to something big. Our activists have done so much to protect public lands from organizing a rally, to writing a letter to the editor, to stuffing envelopes. Just let us know how you want to help out!