Take Action Today!
Thank you for caring about your public lands and waters. You have the opportunity to protect and conserve our local environment through submitting public comments, attending and speaking at meetings, and signing petitions. As a grassroots environmental organization, HCCA is excited to work with our members and the public to proactively shape land and water management. You can be an effective advocate for the environment by taking action on the following issues:
Protect the Sunset Trail Roadless Area from Coal Mining Expansion
Just days after announcing the U.S. will exit the Paris climate agreement, the Trump administration on June 8 pushed ahead with plans for another damaging action: a plan to approve Arch Coal’s proposal to lease 1,700 acres of roadless wildlands in the Gunnison National Forest for mining 17 million tons of coal. The plan, addressed in a draft environmental impact study, would green light exploratory drilling and road construction to expand the West Elk coal mine in the Upper North Fork of Gunnison County.
Tell the White House not to eliminate our public land agencies. Comments due June 12th!
A couple weeks ago, the Trump Administration threatened to dismantle the agencies responsible for taking care of our cherished national parks, national forests, and other public lands. They ordered a review of federal agencies to identify which ones should be eliminated or drastically cut in the name of streamlining government. Public lands depend on public agencies to manage them and any proposal to get rid of these agencies is an attack on the foundation that keeps our public lands public.
The Administration is asking for the public to weigh in by June 12, and we need to tell them loud and clear that protecting public lands and the public land agencies that manage them is a big deal.
Share Your Voice to Protect Our Treasured National Monuments – Comments Due Soon!
While High Country Conservation Advocates is a local organization that focuses on protecting our backyard in the Gunnison Country, we recognize that elsewhere the environment needs an effective voice. Currently, at least 27 national monuments are under “review”, likely meaning that the Trump administration is trying to weaken the protections of these monuments. HCCA is calling upon its advocates to speak up and defend these treasured areas.
Will Arch Coal Shortchange Gunnison County?
High Country Conservation Advocates is calling on YOU to contact BLM Colorado Director Ruth Welch (firstname.lastname@example.org) and ask that Arch Coal pay its way in Gunnison County! BLM should not grant a royalty rate reduction to Arch Coal for mining public coal from public lands at the West Elk mine.
Support Dutchman Creek Instream Flows
The proposed instream flow will protect a fishery and riparian area that currently does not have an instream flow protection. Colorado state policy states that “the wildlife and their environment are to be protected, preserved, enhanced, and managed for the use, benefit, and enjoyment of the people of this state and its visitors…” This instream flow would further this important policy, as our businesses, community, and livelihoods are reliant on a healthy Dutchman Creek.
Thompson Divide Withdrawal and Protection Act of 2017
On March 1 Senator Michael Bennet introduced the Thompson Divide Withdrawal and Protection Act of 2017 to protect more than 172,000 acres in Gunnison, Pitkin and Garfield Counties from the possibility of future mineral leasing. Included in the withdrawal area are the beautiful lands around Kebler Pass and the Highway 133 corridor.
H.R. 865 – Bad for our Forests and Bad for Public Process
Rep. McClintock (R-CA), chair of the House subcommittee on federal lands, has introduced a bill, H.R. 865, to create a categorical exclusion for logging of federal lands where the governor has declared an insect and disease emergency. The most nefarious part of the bill would provide a categorical exclusion (CE) for timber sales that would be expected to generate revenue to offset the cost of the insect and disease-related logging.
Volunteer with HCCA
Whether you would like to help plan an event, attend local hearings and meetings, collect signatures and comments, or share your photos of your favorite local places, we always appreciate your help! HCCA volunteers and members help us in to many ways to protect the places that we all love most.
Contact Mel Yemma to Volunteer
Mel joined the HCCA team in July 2015. After growing up on the east coast, Mel became an o cial Colorado transplant after falling in love with the mountains throughout her studies at Col- orado College, where she majored in environmental science. At Colorado College, Mel gained outreach experience by co-managing the college’s student-run organic farm and working in the sustainability o ce. Prior to moving to Crested Butte, Mel’s travels led her to study the commod- ity chain of chocolate in Belize, as well as start a farm-to-table organic garden at a Hacienda in Nicaragua. By working with HCCA, Mel’s excited to share her passion for our beautiful valley
by getting the community engaged and interested in environmental issues through events and outreach initiatives. In her spare time, Mel spends most of her time planning potlucks, skiing, running, mountain biking, and coordinating a community garden in downtown Crested Butte.