Key Senate Committee approves Wild Olympics bill for first time

Photo: Ed Sozinho

Note the copy in bold.

Yesterday, the Wild Olympics Coalition cheered a major milestone for the Wild Olympics Wilderness and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, sponsored by Senator Patty Murray and Representative Derek Kilmer, as it was voted out of the full Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee for the first time in the bill’s history. With a strong foundation of broad local support and the steadfast efforts of the two Congressional leaders, the bill has made steady progress each successive Congress.

Last year the bill passed the House with bipartisan support and advanced farther than ever before in the Senate. Today’s committee vote completes a crucial step in the Congressional process toward its becoming law.

The Wild Olympics legislation would permanently protect more than 126,500 acres of Olympic National Forest as wilderness and 19 rivers and their major tributaries – a total of 464 river miles – as Wild and Scenic Rivers. Designed through extensive community input to protect ancient forests and salmon streams and enhance outdoor recreation, the legislation would designate the first new wilderness in the Olympic National Forest in nearly four decades and the first-ever protected wild and scenic rivers on the Olympic Peninsula.


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