Sportsmen’s Groups Praise Introduction of Bipartisan Boundary Waters Legislation

News for Immediate Release
Jan. 15, 2020
Contact: Lukas Leaf, SBW, [email protected]
Katie McKalip, BHA, 406-240-9262, [email protected]

Bill would permanently protect both wilderness area and its watershed

WASHINGTON – Leaders in the conservation community commended the introduction of the Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act, bipartisan legislation that would provide for the protection, for current and future generations, of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and interconnected public lands and waters located within the watershed.

Lead sponsors of the bill are Reps. Betty McCollum (D-MN) and Francis Rooney (R-FL) with support from original co-sponsors Reps. Fred Upton (R-MI), Dean Phillips (D-MN), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA) and Raul Grijalva (D-AZ).

Numerous national hunting and angling groups sounded their approval:

“Sportsmen for the Boundary Waters is proud to stand with our partners in wholehearted support of the bipartisan Boundary Waters Wilderness and Pollution Prevention Act,” said Lukas Leaf, executive director of Sportsmen for the Boundary Waters. “The Boundary Waters is a world-class backcountry destination that provides some of the best fishing and hunting the world has to offer and is in urgent need of the same protections Yellowstone received in 2019. This legislation is the next step to ensuring America's most-visited wilderness, along with the public land and water surrounding it, have guaranteed protection for our future generations. We urge all outdoor enthusiasts from across the nation to contact Congress and express their support for this forward-looking bill.”

“The Twin Metals proposal – developing a mine south of the Boundary Waters watershed when everything flows north – makes no sense,” said Backcountry Hunters & Anglers President and CEO Land Tawney. “The outdoor recreation industry in northern Minnesota provides certainty for the local economy. This mine would deliver only short-term economic gain followed by a lifetime of harmful impacts to fish and wildlife. We at Backcountry Hunters & Anglers commend this bipartisan effort to permanently protect a landscape that provides unmatched hunting and fishing opportunities.”

“The Izaak Walton League has been fighting to protect the Boundary Waters area since our inception nearly a hundred years ago,” said Jared Mott, conservation director for the Izaak Walton League. “Ikes across the country pushed for the formation of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, and we are pleased to see this legislation to protect that wilderness introduced. We thank Representatives McCollum and Rooney for their efforts to ensure that the Boundary Waters are protected from water pollution that would threaten America’s most visited wilderness, and we look forward to working with them to pass the Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act.”

“The Ruffed Grouse Society and American Woodcock Society strongly support appropriate use of our public natural resources, but sulfide-ore copper mining and its impacts are simply not compatible with sustainable habitat and recreation on these lands in and around the Boundary Waters,” said Brent Rudolph, chief conservation and legislative officer with the Ruffed Grouse Society and American Woodcock Society.

“With its endless lakes and world-class canoeing and fishing opportunities, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area is an American treasure,” said Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO with the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “TRCP appreciates the bipartisan leadership from Representatives McCollum and Rooney to safeguard this special place from incompatible development, and we encourage lawmakers to move swiftly to pass into law the Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act.”

“The Boundary Waters of Minnesota is the nation’s most visited wilderness area, contributing to Minnesota’s $4.2 billion recreational fishing economy,” said Chad Tokowicz, inland fisheries policy manager for the American Sportfishing Association. “Potential mining operations in the area pose a serious risk to the Boundary Waters’ fisheries and the communities they support. U.S. Representatives McCollum’s and Rooney’s bipartisan Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act would help prevent dangerous mining operations from causing harm to the region’s fisheries and economy.”

“The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is the most-visited wilderness area in the United States,” said Quality Deer Management Association Conservation Director Kip Adams. “As such, we are proud to engage on this issue to ensure the integrity of this special place for generations to come.”

“Rep. Betty McCollum’s bill will provide much needed protections for the water, wildlife and recreation opportunities in the magnificent Boundary Waters Canoe Area,” said Jason Dinsmore, regional representative with the National Wildlife Federation. “This wilderness area is a national treasure that provides world-class camping, hiking, paddling, fishing and hunting for thousands of families every year. Rep. McCollum’s legislation will protect a vibrant outdoor recreation industry and more than 200,000 acres of public land and water from the devastating effects of copper sulfide mining.”

“Sportsmen access and state and federal land management are core priorities for the National Deer Alliance, and protection of one of the country’s most visited wilderness areas is critically important,” said Nick Pinizzotto, president and CEO of the National Deer Alliance. “We support the Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act and are hopeful for its timely passage.”


Contact your representative and ask that they sponsor the Boundary Waters Wilderness Protection and Pollution Prevention Act via the link below:

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