06/10/2010 - Congress should support an effort by six conservation organizations, representing nearly 65,000 Pennsylvanians, to gain wilderness designation for parts of the Allegheny National Forest, that state’s only national forest and a natural area well within the reach of Western New Yorkers.
The coalition is backing the Citizens’ Wilderness Proposal for Pennsylvania’s Allegheny National Forest, a measure de-signed by Friends of Allegheny Wilderness in 2003. The proposal identifies 54,460 acres of wilderness-quality lands in the forest.
Wilderness designation by Congress is the highest level of protection that can be given to federal lands, and would add the acreage to the National Wilderness Preservation System as areas meant for nature and people without technology— cars, bicycles or any other device not available to those who first walked this earth.
The coalition includes the Friends of Allegheny Wilderness, The Sierra Club’s Pennsylvania Chapter, the Pennsylvania division of the Izaak Walton League of America, Pennsylvania Trout Unlimited, The Wilderness Society and the Campaign for America’s Wilderness of the Pew Environment Group. That consortium will devote staff, volunteer time and resources to working directly on this campaign.
Read the full editorial, Designate the Wilderness, on the Buffalo News' Web site.