Friday, December 21, 2018

Friends Of Allegheny Wilderness Applaud Addition Of New National Wilderness Areas Included Federal Farm Bill

On December 21, Friends of Allegheny Wilderness applauded the addition of 20,000 acres of the Cherokee National Forest as wilderness in Tennessee as a result of President Trump’s signature on the 2018 federal Farm Bill.
This is the first wilderness designated in the U.S. during the current (115th) session of Congress, and the first wilderness designated in Tennessee since 1986.
The legislation designates 20,000 acres within the Cherokee National Forest as wilderness. Specifically, the bill designates the 9,038-acre Upper Bald River Wilderness, adds 348 acres to the Big Frog Wilderness, adds 966 acres to the Little Frog Mountain Wilderness, adds 2,922 acres to the Sampson Mountain Wilderness, adds 4,446 acres to the Big Laurel Branch Wilderness, and adds 1,836 acres to the Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock Wilderness.
“This has been a long time coming, and something that Senator Bob Corker (R), Senator Lamar Alexander (R), and Congressman Dr. Phil Roe (R) have been working diligently on for years, through multiple sessions of Congress,” noted Friends of Allegheny Wilderness executive director Kirk Johnson. “Further, with his signature on the Farm Bill, President Trump also keeps an important streak alive — every U.S. president since the Wilderness Act became law in 1964 has signed wilderness legislation, incrementally growing America’s National Wilderness Preservation System to it’s present size of 110 million acres.”
“With two Republican Senators, a Republican Congressman, and a Republican President strongly supporting the Tennessee Wilderness Act, it can be seen that wilderness truly is America’s common ground,” said Johnson.
“Friends of Allegheny Wilderness and all of our supporters call upon Congressman Glenn Thompson (R), Senator Pat Toomey (R), and their Keystone State colleague on the other side of the aisle Senator Bob Casey (D) follow in the Tennessee contingent’s footsteps and work to protect by law under the Wilderness Act important and eminently deserving natural areas of the Allegheny National Forest, such as the proposed Tracy Ridge Wilderness and others,” Johnson said.
For more information on programs, initiatives and how you can get involved, visit the Friends of Allegheny Wilderness website.
(Photo: Members of Friends of Allegheny Wilderness are shown during a 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act winter backpacking trip into the 9,700-acre proposed Tracy Ridge Wilderness in the Allegheny National Forest in March of 2014.)
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