June 3, 2014
As sportsmen-conservation organizations representing millions of hunters and anglers nationwide, we ask you to oppose any legislation that would block the administration’s very deliberate and vital action to clarify and restore longstanding Clean Water Act protections for headwater streams and wetlands across the country.
America’s 47 million sportsmen rely on clean water for access to quality days in the field hunting, angling, and enjoying other outdoor-based recreation. When wetlands are drained and filled and streams are polluted, we lose the ability to pursue our passions and pass them on to our children. Moreover, pollution and destruction of headwater streams and wetlands threaten America’s hunting and fishing economy – which accounts for over $200 billion in economic activity each year and 1.5 million jobs, supporting rural communities in particular.
Since its enactment, the Clean Water Act has been highly successful at improving water quality and stemming the tide of wetlands loss. However, Clean Water Act safeguards for streams, lakes and wetlands have been eroding for over a decade because of a pair of Supreme Court decisions (Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook Cty. v. Army Corps of Engineers (2001) and Rapanos v. United States (2006)) that cast doubt on more than 30 years’ worth of Clean Water Act implementation. As a result of the decisions, 60 percent of stream miles in the United States, which provide drinking water for more than 117 million Americans, are at increased risk of pollution and destruction. Wetlands are at risk as well. In fact, the rate of wetlands loss increased by 140 percent during the 2004-2009 period – the years immediately following the Supreme Court decisions. This is the first documented acceleration of wetland loss since the Clean Water Act was enacted more than 40 years ago during the Nixon administration.
REPORT (PDF): Plan ahead so hunting and sage grouse can thrive alongside energy development
Proactive strategies save sage-grouse habitat, protect treasured wildlife-based recreation and economy, provide needed certainty to oil and gas industry – without sacrificing energy output
MISSOULA—In advance of the annual Western Governors’ Association meeting next week, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers released a study today showing how sound planning can benefit severely-threatened sage grouse habitat areas – which are also prized hunting and recreation areas – without sacrificing energy development in the American West.
The sportsmen’s conservation group released the report, entitled “Conserving Greater Sage-Grouse: A Sportsmen’s Priority,” which shows that conserving the greater sage-grouse is crucial for Western states’ wildlife-based recreation and economies, and will also provide much-needed certainty and stability to the oil and gas industry.
A letter expressing our concerns...
Backcountry Hunters & Anglers is a national conservation organization that was founded around a campfire in Oregon by a group of passionate sportsmen who saw a need to address the threats to our wild public lands from an increasingly mechanized society.
Since its founding ten years ago, BHA has grown to seventeen state chapters and one in British Columbia. Its rapid growth attests to the value sportsmen place on the wild character of those lands. It is because of those values that BHA opposes HR 4272, the Forest Access in Rural Communities Act.
The bill, sponsored by Oregon Congressman Greg Walden, would prohibit the US Forest Service from implementing and enforcing its Travel Management Rule, and require any change in open-road densities on national forests to be signed-off on by local counties. The intent of the bill is to take management decisions out of the hands of the Forest Service and put them in the hands of local communities. The Forest Service uses the best available science as well as the social context when considering open-road densities. Keeping the responsibility for open-road densities within the Forest Service will help to ensure that impacts of roads on wildlife habitat and security are part of the decision making matrix.
Many of us spend considerable time in the backcountry alone. So we need to be able to face whatever challenges might arise. This episode covers the essential survival items to bring into the field, as well as a discussion on the versatility of each of these items.
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Today, President Obama made a presidential declaration under the Antiquities Act to designate 496,000 acres as part of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in Southern New Mexico.
The monument designation is the result of years of work by sportsmen, community members and businesses to provide protection of this iconic landscape – known by sportsmen for its quail, mule deer, antelope and javelina hunting. The monument designation closely mirrors legislation (S. 1805) introduced by Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich this year, which encompasses eight wilderness study areas.
“As a resident and sportsmen who hunts and knows this wild ground, there is no question in my mind that it deserves to be protected” said Las Cruces resident and New Mexico Backcountry Hunters & Anglers Board Member, Randy Gray. “Many sportsmen and community members worked hard to raise awareness of this area, I'm grateful their voices were heard.”