Photo Credit: Save the Boundary Waters
President Biden listened to outdoor recreationists and took a critical step towards protecting the Boundary Waters by proposing a 20-year mining moratorium in the watershed. This announcement kicked off a 90-day public comment period.
The comment period ends on January 19 and we need you to weigh in and let the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) know why it’s important to protect the Boundary Waters.
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is 1.1 million acres of lakes and boreal forest that stretches between the U.S.-Canada border and Lake Superior. In the winter, frigid temperatures turn the Boundary Waters into a snow-covered winter wonderland. One would think that this place is securely protected. Not so. For decades the Boundary Waters have been threatened by the specter of industrial-scale sulfide-ore copper mining on the edge of the Wilderness, within the watershed. This would irrevocably harm the Boundary Waters with water, air, noise, and light pollution.
The debate over mining in the Boundary Waters stretches back decades. Most recently, in 2017 the federal government was poised to withdraw approximately 234,000 acres of Superior National Forest lands in the Boundary Waters watershed from mineral leasing. That decision was reversed by the Trump Administration in late 2017 and in December 2019 a Chilean mining company submitted plans for a mine. Then, in October 2021 the Biden Administration re-initiated the lease withdrawal process, with the Forest Service submitting a request to the BLM to withdraw the area from mineral leasing for 20 years.
(Interested a more detailed history? Visit www.savetheboundarywaters.org)
Right now the BLM is accepting public comment and holding public meetings on the Forest Service’s mineral withdrawal request. This is a critical step towards protecting the Boundary Waters. The comment period is a unique opportunity for the Biden administration to hear directly from you, and all those fighting to protect the Boundary Waters from environmental and economic threats.
Sulfide-ore copper mining is one of the most toxic industries in America, and doesn’t belong anywhere near the Boundary Waters.
We need you to let BLM know why protecting the Boundary Waters is important to you.
Take action TODAY, tell the Biden administration to safeguard this pristine Wilderness for generations to come.