Late breaking developments surrounding the Grand Canyon National Park's Colorado River Management Plan require your immediate action by midnight February 1, 2005.
River Runners For Wilderness encourages you to tell the National Park Service you support the Grand Canyon Wilderness Alliance (GCWA) recommendations, whether or not you have already commented. It's that simple.
The Grand Canyon Wilderness Alliance is a group of 17 bi-partisan environmental, water quality and recreational user groups that has been following the Grand Canyon river planning process since its inception. The GCWA, with over two million members, has come together to support a motor-free wilderness resource in Grand Canyon, with equitable access for all river runners.
Key points in the Alliance comments ask the National Park Service to modify and adopt Alternative C and protect the wilderness character of the Colorado River. The GCWA supports a transition to a motor and helicopter-free river experience, while maintain the present trip length for non-commercial trips. The GCWA urges the NPS to bring social justice to the river corridor by adopting an allocation-free access option (B), and equalizing trip sizes for all groups.
The full Alliance document is posted on the RRFW website.
The Alliance comments are in stark contrast to a recent "compromise" agreement between an industry trade group and pro-motor access groups. Wednesday, a coalition of the Grand Canyon River Outfitters Trade Association, Grand Canyon River Runners Association (representing commercial guests), Grand Canyon Private Boaters Association and American Whitewater announced a plan to adopt the Park's preferred Alternative H with modifications. In this chilling development, the parties agreed to increase commercial motorized tour boat and helicopter access, and maintain the 80-20% imbalance in summer access between river concessions and the self-guided river runners. In return, the group suggests the Park drop any attempt to measure real demand, increase non-commercial user days to the amount already used by concessions passengers, and shorten river trip lengths.
There is a clear danger that the Park will act out of expediency, disregarding the general public that does not support the industry plan. The industry group is hoping to disenfranchise those of us supporting fair access and highest resource protection for Grand Canyon. That's why your comments-or additional comments-are so crucial. The pro-industry group proposal can be read at: http://www.gcroa.org/Pages/issues.htm.
The Grand Canyon Wilderness Alliance needs your support! Here's what you can do:
Send a fax to Grand Canyon National Park planners at 928-638-7797, or go to the National Park sponsored CRMP website at http://www.crmpcomments.com/commentpage.asp and fill in your name, address and e-mail, then scroll all the way to the bottom where it says "Other Comments."
Simply tell the NPS planners that you support GCWA's collaborative approach to resource preservation and equitable access.