Most issues of our monthly newsletter, The Highlands Voice, beginning with Volume 1, in 1969, are archived on our website at www.wvhighlands.org.
Enjoy the following highlights taken from
Eastern Wilderness Act passes
After more than 5 years of frustrating postponement, compromise and revision, the Conservancy’s efforts on behalf of Eastern Wilderness bore fruit on December 18 with Congressional passage of The Eastern Wilderness Act. The Act created 16 Wilderness Areas including Dolly Sods and Otter Creek. Cranberry Backcountry was included in the Bill as a Wilderness Study Area. Study Areas get managed as Wilderness until a final decision is made. The Act was important, too, because it removed the “pristine” concept of wilderness envisioned by the forest service. The language of the act unconditionally rejects this vision of what wilderness is. Instead it suggests that even though these areas were once altered, they have regained their natural character and deserve to be protected as Wilderness.
Mid-Winter Workshop Features New River
The New River was threatened by the Blue Ridge Project – a giant Power Project. At the same time, the Gauley River was threatened by another power project with a dam at Swiss, WV.
President: Charles Carlson
Vice Presidents: Lowell Markey
Membership Secretary: Virginia McTeer
Treasurer: Arthur Foley
Secretary: Stauffer Miller
Voice Editor :Ron Hardway
Rivers Chairman: Bob Burrell
Summer Board Meeting Keys on Corridor H
The Conservancy opposes the fragments approach the DOH is taking in preparing the environmental impact statements. They are seeking a halt to further construction until environmental impacts are studied for the entire alignment. Jim Rawson, Joe Rieffenberger and Don Phares of the WV DNR spoke to the impacts of the Highway. Don Phares mentioned the damage to the Bowden Fish Hatchery already done. Joe Rieffenberger claimed that any of the proposed routes for the highway would annihilate bear habitats. On the more general impacts to wildlife he said, “Well, you have asphalt over a gopher hole, you have a dead gopher. The wildlife is in extreme danger.” Jim Rawson said the proposed route poses considerable and various dangers to wildlife habitat, trout streams, mountain scenery, Wilderness Areas, State Parks, and a National Recreation Area.
Winter Workshop hosts Congressman Hechler
Highlands Scenic Highway
Senator Jennings Randolph has succeeded in getting another $15 million for construction of the Highlands Scenic Highway.
The Strip Mine Bill
This year, as last, the US Congress passed a strip mine bill. This year, as last, President Ford vetoed it. The House failed by 3 votes to overturn the veto. The Conservancy thanked Congressman Staggers for supporting the Bill. Congressman Hechler voted against over-riding the veto. He felt the Bill was too weak.