In a memo obtained by the Washington Post, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has recommended that President Trump shrink the size of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. You can read more about the memo in this Oregonian article by Shane Dixon Kavanaugh.
Despite its location hundreds of miles from Yamhill County, the Cascade-Siskiyou and its future effects all of us. The area is world-renowned for its biodiversity – the neighboring Klamath Mountains have been referred to as the “Galapagos” of North America. In tact and thriving natural habitats, whether they be in the Willamette Valley or the drier South, serve as bulwarks against the advance of global warming. No Oregonian will soon forget the wildfires that raged through the state this summer – yet studies expect these same wildfires to multiply four times by the end of this century. We can act to mitigate these effects, but not if our land falls out of our control.
Secretary Zinke and the current administration would prefer that public lands be turned over to private hands, and that accountability for their management be transferred to a select few, answerable to shareholders, not taxpayers. We need representatives committed to keeping public lands in public hands.