Public Lands and the Environment

We must reject the false choice between healthy public lands and economic prosperity.

 

Our Public Lands

Montanans are stewards of our nation’s most treasured landscapes. But, the millionaires we keep sending to Congress want to wall off access to our natural heritage. We need to walk in the footsteps of conservationists that came before us, save wild places for all and preserve a system of public lands administration that ensures functioning ecosystems, clean rivers and streams, and the inherent worth of wilderness and working lands alike. Wild places should be managed with the interests of hunters, hikers, and fishermen in mind. We must:

 

  • Permanently fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund, set to run out in 2020. 

  • Expand innovative community partnerships like the Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Act

  • Reinvigorate the Antiquities Act. Never again should an administration be able to single-handedly destroy National Monuments like Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante or Bears Ears.

  • Safeguard public access to our public lands

  • Protect the Endangered Species Act

 

Climate Change

I am tired of cowardly politicians refusing to acknowledge the threat of climate change. My generation - my family, my friends, my children - will have to live with the effects of our current leaders’ inaction. More than other citizens, Montanans recognize the threats posed by climate change. Wildfires are burning hotter and longer, croplands flood regularly, invasive species stand at our doorstep ready to destroy ecosystems in the Flathead, and our glaciers are receding at a rapid pace. We owe it to the generations beyond us to do everything we can to address climate change. 

During the 2018 legislative session, I sponsored innovative, first-in-the-nation legislation to improve air quality during Montana’s wildfire seasons in order to better protect vulnerable populations like the elderly, young and sick. We need laws to not only address the most dire threats posed by climate change, but laws to ameliorate its current effects on the health and wellbeing of our society.

The truth is that farmland will become ranchland, plantings will need to shift, and hunters and anglers will face changing herds and diminished fisheries. But the most vulnerable populations, as always, will feel the effects first. All climate-focused legislation must address the needs of people who have felt environmental injustices most keenly in the past - low income, rural, Native American communities foremost among them.  

To tackle the causes and effects of climate change we need cooperation and acknowledgment of the facts. In DC I will work tirelessly for Montanans’ rights to breathe clean air and drink clean water. I will use my experiences in the State Legislature and serving Montana to protect our climate for the betterment of our health and environment for now and many years in the future. This campaign will not accept money from Big Oil. I will fight to keep the “Last Best Place” our best place. 

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