Today, we have achieved a remarkable victory. The United States House of Representatives passed the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act, which will forever prohibit gold mining on 30,370 acres of public lands at Yellowstone’s northern gateway. It now heads to the president’s desk to be signed into law, making it an extraordinary bipartisan win.
In 2015, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition (GYC) silently launched an ambitious, yet thoughtful, 5-year, $10 million fundraising campaign in support of our grizzly bear work. Over the past four years, donors from across the nation have helped GYC achieve an enormous number of on-the-ground improvements that are keeping bears alive and people safe.
You have the chance to help determine the future of our wild backyard for the next 30 years.
We are lucky to call the Gallatin and Madison mountains home. They provide abundant wildlife, clean drinking water, and wild trails – but for how much longer? Between skyrocketing populations and a changing landscape, these constants of mountain living are starting to look a lot less certain. Now the Custer Gallatin National Forest’s management plan is up for its once-in-a-generation revision, giving us our chance to secure our mountains’ future.
As the popularity of winter recreation continues to expand across the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem it is up to us to recreate responsibly. Fortunately it isn’t very hard to help give wildlife a chance to endure in winter. By staying out of established Habitat Protection Areas we avoid stressing animals, helping them conserve those critical fat reserves they are relying on through late April. These areas represent a small fraction of the overall terrain available to human recreationists, a small sacrifice for the future of the GYE.
As a community organizer, I spend a lot of time thinking about how and why people come together. In today’s age of polarizing politics, common ground is admittedly hard to come by. Fortunately for us in Montana, we’ve got plenty of it – over 30 million acres, in fact. Our abundant public land is the literal common ground upon which all manner of Montanans stand to celebrate, enjoy, and defend.
(Photo Eliza Wiley.)
Today, Senator Jon Tester (D-MT), with Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) as co-sponsor, reintroduced the Yellowstone Gateway Protection Act into the 116th Congress. When passed, the law will prohibit large-scale mining on 30,370 acres of our public lands at Yellowstone’s northern gateway forever.
(Photo Bill Campbell.)