“The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is a spectacular place made up of over a million acres of lakes and forests -- the only large lake-land wilderness in the National Wilderness Preservation System. With more than 150,000 visitors annually, it is treasured by Minnesotans and visitors from around the continent.
“Thanks to more than 24,000 Environment Minnesota members and supporters and others who made their voices heard, this special place will be safe for canoeing and other recreation for decades to come.
“The Administration’s decision to put pristine lakes over toxic mining operations is a true testament to the conservation values that President Obama, Secretaries Jewell and Vilsack share with the vast majority of Americans.
“In denying renewal of two hard rock mineral leases in the area, the national forest service noted the threat of potential water contamination. Acid mine drainage is a known environmental risk at sulfide ore mine sites like the one proposed. Contamination from such mining could have dramatic impacts on aquatic life, sport fisheries, and the recreation opportunities of the area.
“The Obama Administration is doing what’s needed to protect the best of America’s spectacular land and waterscapes. Here’s hoping the Greater Grand Canyon Heritage Monument and Bears Ears are next on their list!