To: President Donald Trump and The United States House of Representatives

Support HR 2072, The National Park and Wilderness Waters Protection Act

Please support Congresswoman Betty McCollum's bill, the National Park and Wilderness Waters Protection Act. Her historic bill works to protect the Boundary Waters Canoe Area and Voyageurs National Park from sulfide-ore copper mining's pollution.

Why is this important?

The Boundary Waters Canoe Area wilderness is the most popular Wilderness area in America. At 1.1 million acres in size, it is the largest wilderness area east of the Rockies and north of the Everglades. The Boundary Waters offers 1,200 miles of canoe and kayak routes, 237.5 miles of overnight hiking trails and 2,000 designated campsites, and is home to iconic wildlife including lynx, wolves, moose and loons.

The Boundary Waters is now jeopardized by recent proposals to bring sulfide-ore copper mining – a risky type of mining that has never before been permitted in Minnesota – to places where pollution will drain into the Wilderness itself. Byproducts of sulfide-ore copper mining include hazardous pollutants such as sulfuric acid and heavy metals, which could permanently ruin the pristine water and unspoiled forests of this place.

Pollution from these mines would flow right into the Boundary Waters as well as impact Voyageurs National Park. These beloved national treasures offer unparalleled outdoor experiences to millions of people, and help drive the economy of Northeastern Minnesota, where tourism supports 18,000 jobs and brings $850 million in sales annually to the region.

Please make preserving these pristine waters and unspoiled forests, and the sustainable regional economy, a priority. Toxic mining pollution would damage the rivers and lakes that flow into the Boundary Waters and Voyageurs National Park.

The National Park and Wilderness Waters Protection Act safeguards America’s most popular Wilderness and Minnesota’s beloved National Park by helping prevent sulfide-ore copper mining in the Rainy River Drainage Basin.

The bill emphasizes the Boundary Waters and Voyageurs National Park as national treasures, and that their protection is the responsibility of the entire country.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. This is the time to act to protect Minnesota’s National Park.

Last year marked the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, which established the Boundary Waters as a federally designated Wilderness area. This bill takes an historic step in completing efforts to permanently protect the Boundary Waters Canoe Area from sulfide-ore copper mining.

The National Park and Wilderness Waters Protection Act is extremely important to preserving these two national treasures. We applaud Congresswoman Betty McCollum for taking bold action to ensure their protection. And we are asking you to ask your Representative and President Obama to join Rep. McCollum in preserving the Boundary Waters Canoe Area and Voyageurs National Park.

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