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Friday, January 7, 2011

Trout Unlimited action item: Protect PA Forest Lands from Further Gas Development

Pennsylvania's forest lands are home to sensitive trout spawning headwater streams, more than 2,500 miles of trails, and a variety of wildlife species from ruffed grouse to black bears. State forest lands provide significant opportunities to hunt and fish, from easily accessible hunting and fishing spots to more remote wilderness locations.

Pennsylvania's state forests play an important role in the economy, generating jobs and billions of dollars in revenue from the sustainable forest products industry and outdoor tourism. And Pennsylvania is home to the largest tract of certified forest in North America, meeting or exceeding the international gold standard for environmentally responsible stewardship.

Currently, 700,000 acres -- or one-third -- of Pennsylvania's 2.1 million acre state forest are available for natural gas extraction. In May 2010, PA's Department of Conservation and Natural Resource conducted an analysis that concluded that no additional leasing of state forest lands can occur without significantly altering the ecological integrity and wild character of the state's forest system. Toward the end of his term, Governor Rendell took a stand to protect the state's valuable forest assets by issuing an executive order banning further gas development on state lands.

Protecting Pennsylvania's remaining state forest land from further gas development is critical to ensuring the same recreational and economic opportunities for future generations. That's why it is imperative that you act today to tell Governor-elect Corbett to protect Pennsylvania's state forest legacy from further gas development.

(more after the jump)

What you can do:

1) Visit our online action center to contact Governor-elect Corbett's transition team today.

2) Call Governor-elect Corbett's Transition Team office and urge the new Governor to protect Pennsylvania's remaining state forest lands from gas drilling at (717) 237-7351.