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:

Comment on Governor Hickenlooper's Climate Plan

Gov. John Hickenlooper’s plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions ignores Colorado’s number one source of methane pollution ― the West Elk coal mine in Gunnison County. The governor’s Colorado Climate Plan is open for public comment through November 3, and High Country Conservation Advocates (HCCA) urges you to tell the governor to stop allowing the West Elk Mine to undercut our climate!

Click here for more information and where to send your comments

Oppose the Federal Land Freedom Act (H.R. 3565 in the House and S. 335 in the Senate)

This proposed act would allow states to “assume federal leasing, permitting and regulatory responsibilities for oil and gas exploration, development, and production” on U.S. public lands. This proposal would have detrimental consequences from excluding these lands from the Endangered Species Act and overall skirting protections for federal lands by conveying oversight to state governments.

Call Representative Scott Tipton ((970) 241-2499) and Senator Cory Gardner ((970) 245-9553 or (303) 391-5777) and tell him you strongly oppose H.R. 3565 (house bill) and S. 335 (senate bill) and tell them to vote no on this dangerous bill.

Tell Scott Tipton to Abandon the Planning for American Energy Act (H.R. 2907)

Representative Tipton recently reintroduced H.R. 2907 which would require the Interior Secretary to distort the concept of “sustained yield”, which is originally applied to renewable resources like timber, and apply this to non-renewable resources such as oil, gas, coal and uranium. This bill would pave the way for the fossil fuel industry to lobby the Energy Information Administration and demand that fossil fuels be identified as a required energy need, regardless of market forces or the efficiency of clean energy resources. This bill also prioritizes public lands as the first point of extraction of these non-renewable resources. Scott Tipton promised us that he was a public lands champion in his campaign, but this bill proves the opposite.

Our friends at Wilderness Workshop said it best, this bill is a “sneaky attempt to force dirty energy on the American people at the expense of our public lands.” Call Representative Scott Tipton ((970) 241-2499) today and tell him to abandon H.R. 2907.

Tell Scott Pruitt not to repeal the Clean Water Rule

It’s official- The EPA’s proposal to deconstruct the Clean Water Rule has been published in the Federal Register. If Scott Pruitt is successful, this will get rid of protections for small creeks and wetlands that form the headwaters of our watersheds. In 2015, the Obama Administration’s EPA and Army Corps of Engineers issued the Clean Water Rule to clarify the jurisdiction of the federal government to enforce the Clean Water Act on smaller water bodies across the United States. The Clean Water Rule helped to eliminate regulatory uncertainty and is largely viewed as a middle of the road approach that defines the federal government’s ability to protect headwater streams from pollution.

Protecting our Nation’s water resources is essential. Please join High Country Conservation Advocates and our friends at American Rivers in asking Pruitt not to repeal the Clean Water Rule.

Click here to add your voice

Say No to the State Mineral Revenue Protection Act (H.R. 2661)

H.R. 2661 would require royalty payments from the extraction of resources on public lands (owned by all U.S. citizens) to be paid directly to the states where they are extracted. This bill would incentivize states to green light resource extraction proposals and bypass rational protections for our shared public lands.

Keep public lands in public hands! Call Representative Scott Tipton ((970) 241-2499) today and tell him to oppose H.R. 2661. 

Watershed Management Planning: Add Your Voice!

Stakeholder input is a crucial component of the watershed management planning process. In the East River Watershed, we’re asking YOU to provide input on how we can collaborate to manage our water resources.

Click here to learn more and fill out the survey

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.

Click here to sign on your support

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.

Click here for more information and how to show your support

Support the Gunnison Public Lands Initiative

Signing a letter of support for the Gunnison Public Lands Initiative is one of the easiest ways to help us protect our public lands for their beautiful scenery, wildlife, and incredible recreation. The GPLI will use your signature to show local and state elected officials how much people care about Gunnison County’s public lands.

Click here to sign the letter of support

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

11 + 8 =

Mel Yemma

Mel Yemma

Outreach Director

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.