Groups Urge Forest Service to Say No to Mining Near Mt. St. Helens
Washington Wild joined 18 other conservation and recreation organizations on a letter to the Forest Service opposing mining operations in the Green River valley and Goat Mountain near Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. The mining proposal has been challenged and delayed at least three times over the last decade. It threatens to devastate the Green River valley and its unique ecosystem, including important habitat for fish, wildlife, as well as disrupt important recreation activities in the area. In addition, this public land was acquired in 1986 under the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF).
The letter requested that the U.S. Forest Service deny mineral exploration within the Green River valley, and on all U.S. Forest Service lands acquired using the LWCF which are required to be managed for conservation and recreation – not for mining.
People come to this area to enjoy solitude and outdoor recreation activities such as camping, hiking, hunting, fishing, mountain biking and horseback riding. Popular recreation areas include the Goat Mountain and Green River trails, and the neighboring Mount Margaret Backcountry area. For two decades, the Green River Horse Camp and several trails open to stock use in the area, including Vansen Peak, Green Mountain, Strawberry Mountain, and Goat Mountain, have been popular destinations for equestrians, hikers, campers and hunters.
Washington Wild was among 16 conservation and recreation organizations submitted comments on this proposal back in July 2012, opposing this project because of the negative effects on humans and the environment that could occur from the proposed activities.