Environment Colorado and 90 groups released a letter to President Obama calling for lasting protections for parks like Mesa Verde National Park from drilling and pollution.
Mesa Verde National Park and other beloved parks in Colorado have been providing Colorado residents with lifelong memories for over 100 years. With groups from La Plata Open Space Conservancy to the Durango Rivertrippers signed on, as well as leaders such as La Plata County Commissioner Gwen Lachelt, the letter demonstrates the tremendous value that citizens, outdoors organizations, and local business owners place on Colorado’s public parks.
“Mesa Verde National Park and many other parks all across Colorado are where some of our families’ most unforgettable memories are formed — our first hikes, our first time camping, our first encounter with wildlife,” said Margaret McCall, Field Associate with Environment Colorado. “That’s why Mesa Verde National Park deserves permanent protections from pollution and drilling.”
The letter urges President Obama to protect Mesa Verde National Park by fully funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund in his upcoming budget proposal. The Land and Water Conservation Fund provides our public lands with critical protection from increasing drilling, development, and pollution by giving our Park Service the ability to purchase privately owned land within or surrounding the park that would otherwise be developed and become a threat to the local ecosystem – all without spending a single taxpayer dollar.
The letter details how Congress’ annual raiding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund has left a legacy of backlogged conservation and recreation needs. Here in Colorado, Mesa Verde National Park and many other parks are facing increasing threats from the oil and gas industry.
To prevent the oil and gas industry from threatening Colorado’s environment, President Obama must address the undercutting of our nation’s premier fund for land and water protection.
“President Obama has a great opportunity to help ensure that parks like Mesa Verde National Park are protected by calling for full and dedicated funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund in his upcoming budget proposal. Our parks and future generations are depending on it,” said McCall.
Environment Colorado is a statewide, citizen-based environmental advocacy organization working toward a cleaner, greener, healthier future.