Kalmiopsis Wilderness Leon WerdingerThe Forest Service (FS) has released an Environmental Assessment (EA) that would withdraw mineral rights on about 101,000 acres of national forest and Bureau of Land Management-administered land near the Kalmiopsis Wilderness in Oregon. The rugged, nearly 180,000-acre Kalmiopsis is one of the original Wildernesses designated by the Wilderness Act in 1964. The FS is proposing to add a five-year mineral rights withdrawal to its current two-year moratorium while Congress considers the Southwestern Oregon Watershed and Salmon Protection Act of 2015 (S. 346 and H.R. 682) to permanently protect the area from mining. Some of the lands proposed for protection border the Kalmiopsis Wilderness and include the Hunter Creek and North Fork Pistol River headwaters and the Rough and Ready Creek and Baldface Creek watersheds. A foreign mining company, Red Flat Nickel Corp., is proposing an open-pit nickel mine on more than 3,000 acres of public lands just outside the Kalmiopsis Wilderness.


• Read Wilderness Watch's comments


Action alert (Comments were due 5/27/16):
Please submit a comment supporting the agency’s good decision to protect the Kalmiopsis. In your letter, please thank the Forest Service for its decision to protect the Kalmiopsis from mining. You might also include the following talking points:

  •     The Kalmiopsis Wilderness is recognized for its exceptional rivers and streams—including the Wild Illinois, Chetco, and North Fork Smith rivers—that support salmon and steelhead among other fish and aquatic insects.
  •     The Kalmiopsis is also noted for its unique geology and rich plant life.
  •     The Forest Service’s decision to extend the withdrawal of mineral rights for another five years is a good decision that will protect the wild character of the Kalmiopsis as well as its rich plant and animal life and clean waters.
  •     The Forest Service’s plan is necessary to protect the Kalmiopsis Wilderness from mining while Congress considers its permanent protection through the Southwestern Oregon Watershed and Salmon Protection Act of 2015.
Submit your comments by—
  •     Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. (Please include "SW Oregon Mineral Withdrawal" in the subject line.)
  •     Mail: Robert MacWhorter, Forest Supervisor, c/o Shannon Downey, Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, 3040 Biddle Road, Medford, OR 97504.

Thank you for helping to protect the Kalmiopsis Wilderness from mining!

You can also sign an online comment letter at: http://www.kalmiopsiswildrivers.org/submit-a-public-comment
Read the EA.
Read more in a news article.

Photo: Leon Werdinger Photography

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