Monday, June 25, 2012

Wild Olympics Bill Introduced in Congress

Last week, Senator Patty Murray and Representative Norm Dicks introduced a scaled back version of the proposed Wild Olympics Wilderness and Wild and Scenic Rivers act. The plan had been a flashpoint of controversy in some of the communities on the Olympic Peninsula, where logging has traditionally been a major source of employment. Despite the less ambitious scope of the bill it would still be a major step forward towards permanent protection for many of the Peninsula's most treasured watersheds. The bill would protect more than 125,000 acres as wilderness including 90,000 acres of old growth and add Wild and Scenic designation to 19 new rivers. Despite the wealth of rivers in the state, Washington is home to woefully few Wild and Scenic Rivers and in recent years the states congressional delegation has vowed to increase the number of rivers in the state afforded protection under the act.

More information in an article from the Seattle Times:

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