Trump Signs Public Lands Bill Which Protects Oregon Wilderness

Mar 12, 2019

Conservationists are cheering after President Donald Trump signed a sweeping public lands bill Tuesday. Among other things, it establishes the 30-thousand acre Devils Staircase Wilderness in southwest Oregon. 

Devils Staircase waterfall.
Credit Andrew Kumler

The legislative package includes the Oregon Wildlands Bill which also protects the Chetco River, and adds 250 miles of Oregon waterways to the national wild and scenic Rivers system. Josh Laughlin is Executive Director of Cascadia wildlands in Eugene which has long worked to protect the Devils Staircase area in Oregon’s coast range.

“It’s a monumental conservation feat and really a culmination of years of advocacy by businesses and community members and our elected officials who cherish big trees, clean water, and these incredible landscapes in here in our region.”

Oregon Representative Peter DeFazio and Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden have championed the legislation. It also creates the Frank and Jeanne Moore Wild Steelhead Special Management Area on 100-thousand acres by the North Umpqua River in southwest Oregon. 

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