Letter

Success Story: Disaster Averted at the Grand Canyon

Citing strong public opposition to a proposed commercial development near the southern boundary of Grand Canyon National Park, the Kaibab National Forest Supervisor recently announced her decision to deny a road easement request that would have enabled the massive construction project. Click “Read More” to learn about the Coalition’s involvement in this issue.

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Coalition Comments on Proposed Changes to Cape Hatteras ORV Rule

The National Defense Authorization Act of 2015 included a rider that required NPS to consider a variety of changes to the 2012 final rule for off-road vehicle (ORV) management at Cape Hatteras National Seashore. NPS has published an environmental assess (EA) describing the proposed changes, all of which favor increased ORV access at the Seashore. Click “Read More” to see the Coalition’s comments on the EA.

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Park Institute of America To Inspire Stewardship For Future Generations

The Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks is announcing the establishment of a Park Institute of America. The institute is a collaboration with Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment and will be located on Duke’s campus in Durham, North Carolina. The goal of the Institute is to engage in broad conversations about the importance of parks and protected areas as a vital component of society. The Institute will advocate for parks and other important natural and historic places through public education and will make practical recommendations to advance public policy.

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Big Concerns Regarding Proposed Big Cypress Backcountry Access Plan and Wilderness Study

Recent management plans at Big Cypress have mischaracterized the Preserve’s legislative mandate and shortchanged the amount of eligible wilderness in the 1988 Addition to the Preserve. A proposed new backcountry access plan and wilderness study (plan/study) for the original Preserve appears to be headed toward the same shortcomings. Click “Read More” to see the Coalition’s comments on the preliminary alternatives newsletter for the plan/study.

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Coalition Supports Proposed Changes to Virginia’s Powerline Approval Process

The Coalition has joined forces with conservation and historic preservation groups to support legislation in the Virginia House of Delegates that would better protect historic resources by strengthening the State’s requirements related to approval of new high voltage transmission lines. Click “Read More” to see our joint letter to the Chair of the Special Subcommittee on Energy.

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Say “No” to Pipelines Through Parks

Current law requires specific Congressional approval before an oil or gas pipeline can be built through any unit of the National Park System. However, a proposed amendment to an energy bill being considered in the U.S. Senate would eliminate this requirement and promote the construction of natural gas pipelines through parks. The Coalition and other conservation groups strongly oppose the pipelines-through-parks amendment. Click “Read More” to see our joint letter to members of the U.S. Senate.

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Coalition Opposes James River Transmission Line Project

The Coalition has joined the fight in opposing Dominion Virginia Power’s proposed new high-voltage transmission line across the James River near historic Jamestown. The proposal includes 17 huge transmission towers, as tall as the Statue of Liberty and topped with flashing red lights, that would cross the river within view of various historic properties. Click “Read More” to see our letter urging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deny the power company’s permit request.

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Tennessee Lands Unsuitable for Mining

The State of Tennessee has petitioned the U.S. Office of Surface Mining Regulation and Enforcement (OSMRE) to designate as “unsuitable for mining” over 67,000 acres of state-designated conservation lands in northeastern Tennessee. The proposal would provide a variety of conservation benefits, including improved water quality and protection of riparian habitats in two NPS-managed parks that lie downstream of the petition area. The Coalition strongly supports the State’s petition. Click “Read More” to see our letter to OSMRE.

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Big Cypress Planning Document Has Unexpected Reference to Disputed Court Statement

The most recent NPS planning document at Big Cypress National Preserve, an environmental assessment for a proposed oil and gas survey, surprisingly relies upon a disputed district court statement regarding the appropriate management of the Preserve. The court statement was challenged by the Coalition in a September 2015 amicus curiae brief and subsequently disavowed in a federal brief filed by the U.S. Department of Justice on behalf of NPS. Click “Read More” to see our letter about this issue to NPS Director Jon Jarvis.

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Pro Bike Race at Colorado National Monument a Bad Idea

In 2010-2011, the National Park Service (NPS) denied a permit request to hold a professional bicycle race on the main road into Colorado National Monument, citing conflicts with NPS management policies and impacts to access for park visitors. Recent news reports suggest that the new park superintendent may be reconsidering allowing the race after all. Click “Read More” to see our letter to the superintendent.

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