Thanks to the Blaine County commissioners for coming out in support of a national monument designation for the Boulder-White Clouds. With over 90 percent of Idahoans placing Idaho’s natural environment as a highest-priority value, it seems a no-brainer to protect the largest unprotected pristine landscape in the lower 48 states.
Undecided how you feel? Consider these points:
- SNRA, Forest Service and BLM management would retain management jurisdiction, but operate under a combined management plan.
- Hunting and fishing access would remain the same, managed by Idaho Fish & Game. There would be enhanced protection for big-game habitat.
- Mountain biking and motorized would be determined by a travel management plan developed through public input.
- CIEDRA proposed wilderness protection for 44 percent of the quarter of million acres at issue, but it has been trapped in permanent political deadlock. A national monument does not offer the degree of protection that wilderness designation offers, but provides a more comprehensive protection for 100 percent of this great landscape.
- Who should be against a national monument? If you’re an out-of-state mining company wanting no restrictions on where or how you mine, this is not for you. But it works for the rest of us, and for Idaho.