Saturday, December 16, 2006

I'm Dreaming of a Wild Christmas!-Part II

New England Wilderness Bill Passes

The 109th Congress- the lamest since 1946 has at least managed to pass a few bills of substance that are good for lovers of nature and all things wild. The New England Wilderness Act passed, protecting 76,500 acres of new wilderness in New Hampshire and Vermont. New Hampshire's White Mountains will see 34,500 acres added to its wilderness inventory. This new designation will expand the existing Sandwich Range Wilderness area and create a new wilderness area at Wild River. Vermont's Green Mountain National Forest's total wilderness has now increased to over 100,000 acres, nearly 25% of the entire National Forest
The part of the bill dealing with New Hampshire's share was authored by Senator Sununu and co-sponsored by Senator Gregg, both republicans. Nice to see the GOP move back into the conservation department-after all it was the party that gave us some of the strongest pieces of environmental legislation, ala T. Roosevelt and R. Nixon in our nation's history. The Vermont portion of the bill which proved to be a bit more controversial was added to the New Hampshire bill to be presented as a single New England bill. This proved to be a wise move, providing passage and a great outcome. Nice job!

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