Oct 17, 2016

Northern California Communities Celebrate 10TH anniversary of legislation safeguarding our wilderness

 Local communities, businesses, recreation enthusiasts, teachers, families and residents will highlight their commitment to preserving public lands this fall with a series of events commemorating a decade of protection for special places in five Northern California counties.

This year, and today specifically, marks the 10th anniversary of the Northern California Coastal Wild Heritage Wilderness Act, which was signed into law on October 17, 2006.

This legislation protected 273,000 acres of Wilderness and 21 miles of a Wild & Scenic River, and set aside approximately 51,000 acres as a Recreation Area for off-highway vehicles, mountain bikes, and other recreational activities. These public lands are located in Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino and Napa Counties, and include the Black Butte River in Mendocino County and the Cow Mountain Recreation Area in Mendocino and Lake Counties.

To mark this significant anniversary, communities and land managers throughout Northern California are holding a series of events this fall, including hikes and restoration projects with students, veterans, members of local Native American Tribes and more. These activities aim to encourage local families and residents to explore these special places and highlight the local commitment to protect these public lands for future generations.

A decade later, our communities continue to benefit from the Northern California Coastal Wild Heritage Wilderness Act,” said Ryan Henson, Senior Policy Director for CalWild, one of the organizations helping to support these events. “These benefits include clean water, the preservation of iconic wildlife, and access to recreation activities like hiking, fishing, boating, and hunting.”

This 10th anniversary coincides with the National Park Service Centennial and the 70th anniversary of the Bureau of Land Management, which manages many of these public lands. These milestones provide perfect occasions to recognize the incredible value these public lands contribute to our lives.

“It’s a perfect time to recognize the Congressional leaders that championed the protection of these special places: Congressman Mike Thompson, Senator Barbara Boxer and Senator Dianne Feinstein. Their legacy can be seen in the beauty of the Black Butte River, the redwoods of Elkhorn Ridge, and the bald eagles and elk in Cache Creek,” said Sara Husby, Executive Director of Tuleyome, an organization that is also celebrating these events.

“Looking to the future, we urge our Congressional and regional leaders to continue making the protection and funding of our public lands a priority,” addedHenson. “Together, we can ensure that future generations will enjoy Northern California’s outdoors in its wildest form.”

Community partners are proud to host these events and work in stewardship with land managers from the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service.To learn more, visit http://tuleyome.org/northcoastwildernessbill/.   

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