Utah Wilderness News, October 24, 2011

Protecting western lands: a legacy opportunity for President Obama

“To be honest, Obama is traveling to Denver this week because he needs to win Colorado in 2012. His support for Western wilderness could reveal him, not only as a consummate politician strategizing for regional votes, but as a president who follows Stegner’s words by consecrating for all Americans, and for our global visitors, ‘a geography of hope.’

Perhaps a grand vista seen through the clear air from a mountain peak or a meditative moment in a serene, slick-rock canyon could awaken in the president a knowing sense that preserving Western landscapes is as essential to the national interest as the security of jobs and a sound economy. It can also be important to the electing of presidents and building their legacy.”  Op-ed – The Aspen Times

A parade of untrustworthiness by Utah elected officials

“Sen. Orrin Hatch and Rep. Rob Bishop begin this recent parade of untrustworthiness by protesting the use of the Antiquities Act to protect public lands. They cynically and disingenuously bristle about Utahns being more than capable “of managing our own lands,” and they rail against ‘unelected bureaucrats’ who do so in our stead.

Do they really think that the state of Utah will do a better job managing 33 million acres of federal lands when we can’t keep our 95,000 acres (and a million acres of surface water) in Utah state parks solvent?

Hatch, a United States senator for the past 34 years, and Bishop, chairman of the House Resources subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands, know perfectly well that public lands do not belong to Utahns alone. And they disrespect the decent ‘unelected bureaucrats’ who work for the federal land management agencies, devoting their lives to our natural heritage.”  Op-ed – The Salt Lake Tribune

Great news for wilderness! Forest roadless rule upheld

“Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance attorney Heidi McIntosh said the ruling makes clear that federal land managers can preserve some lands under their multiple-use mandates.

‘It’s a pretty definitive statement,’ she said.”  Read more – The Salt Lake Tribune