The National Park Service (NPS) has released for public comment a Study Report of Wild and Scenic River designation of the lower Farmington River and Salmon Brook. Legislation was also introduced to the U.S. Congress this year (HR 4360, S 2286) for Wild & Scenic designation. Although the legislation is not likely to come up for vote this year, favorable public comment on the Study Report will promote legislation in the next Congress. Your comments filed before the October 17 deadline will help secure lasting protection for these rivers.
A designation of Wild & Scenic permanently protects against federally licensed or assisted dams, diversions, or other water projects that would adversely affect its free-flowing condition. For example, paddling at Tariffville Gorge would be protected from any future proposals to build a new dam where the Spoonville Dam used to be. In addition, designation would help the NPS and others support and enhance recreational use.
There are 3 alternatives presented in the Study Report.
American Whitewater officially supports Alternative B, and asks that paddlers consider doing the same. If you agree, be sure that you submit a comment that specifically endorses Alternative B, and mentions that you are a paddler who has a direct connection with the Farmington River and/or Salmon Brook. Mentioning you value the paddling opportunities that these rivers offer will help ensure those opportunities are protected and enhanced for perpetuity.
Read the Study Documents and click on the "Comment on Document" button on that page to submit your comment by October 17, 2012.
Thank you for stepping up for these great rivers!
Learn more about this issue here.