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Trump Administration Seeks to Open Up Montana’s Wildlands to Fossil Fuel Development | Take Action Tuesday @EarthFoodLife

July 16, 2019
Postcard perfect, for now: “The Breaks” are the heart of Montana’s big sky country and encompass the same untouched landscapes that inspired western painter Charles Russell, known as “the cowboy artist” for his romantic paintings of Montana and early western culture. The Trump administration wants to remove conservation protections across this pristine and beloved “Russell Country,” making parts of this region available for destructive and dangerous oil and gas development, further locking the nation into dependence on fossil fuels. (Photo credit: Bureau of Land Management/Flickr)

Pew Charitable Trusts: Central Montana’s Russell Country is characterized by varied, rugged landscapes. Pristine prairie, sliced by the Musselshell River, transforms to rough and craggy breaks approaching the Missouri River. One of the last places to be settled in the West, this sparsely populated section of the country remains almost as remote and wild as it was over 200 years ago. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has just published for public comment the long-awaited draft plan for managing some of this wild country. Unfortunately, the BLM’s recommendation continues the Trump administration’s unprecedented pattern of eliminating conservation protections for special areas in the region, opening up these special places to oil and gas development.
>>>Urge the BLM to take a balanced approach and protect some of these wild remote public lands from future development.

Lady Freethinker: Locked in lonely metal cages, poisoned, sliced open and burned—all for unreliable and needless experiments. This is the fate animals in clinical trials are forced, by law, to suffer in laboratories across the U.S. Now, in a landmark court case, Vanda Pharmaceuticals is taking legal action against the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for trying to pressure the company into conducting cruel and inhumane trials of a new drug on innocent dogs, after which the animals would be mercilessly slaughtered or “sacrificed,” then carved up and their organs analyzed. Vanda Pharmaceuticals describes the nine-month, non-rodent toxicity studies it is fighting against—which involve animals, normally beagle puppies, being force-fed, injected or forced to inhale chemicals before being put to death—as the “unnecessary and unethical” routine killing of animals. The suffering and eventual slaughter of animals in research is unacceptable, and completely avoidable.
>>>Urge Acting Commissioner of the FDA Norman Sharpless to abolish nine-month, non-rodent toxicity studies that result in the pointless and painful deaths of hundreds of innocent dogs and other animals.

Rainforest Action Network: Millions of dollars in sweets are sold by companies like Hershey’s and Mars every year—with holidays like Easter and Halloween each netting millions apiece. What’s not so sweet is that too many of these tasty treats contain palm oil born of rainforest destruction. With commitments to “No Deforestation” but no adequate system in place to actually track where destruction is going down, candy makers continue to profit off of a bitter fate for rainforests, and for the tigers, orangutans, elephants and people who depend on them.
>>>Urge Hershey’s and Mars to establish proactive, transparent monitoring systems showing consumers where their palm oil is grown, the actions that they are taking to track deforestation and to intervene to keep forests standing.

Cause for concern…

Too many people: A large crowd disperses after a Muse concert in Paris on June 23, 2007. Three decades ago, there were 5 billion people on Earth. Today, there are 7.7 billion. By 2050, humans will number 9.7 billion and the population will continue to surge, reaching nearly 11 billion by 2100. “Our planet cannot withstand such numbers,” writes paleontologist Peter Ward in his book “The End of Evolution.” As Robin McKie, science and environment editor for the Observer, reports, 10 billion humans means that “every forest, valley and piece of land will have to be turned to agriculture to feed us.” (Photo credit: James Cridland/Flickr)

Round of applause…

Be the change: Love animals and want to make a difference? One of the most powerful things you can do is to lobby for pro-animal legislation. “Whether they’re city council members, state representatives or U.S. Senators, elected officials care—or ought to care—what their constituents think,” says the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF), a nonprofit advocacy group whose mission is to protect animals through the legal system. “By sending letters and emails supporting pro-animal measures that are on the legislative agenda, you can help convince these politicians that the voters who put them in office want to see animals protected from cruelty and neglect. And if there are no pro-animal items on the agenda, you can help change that, too. Tell lawmakers what types of animal protection laws you would like to see introduced and passed.” To help ordinary citizens become animal defenders, ALDF has put together a handy toolkit: “Working With Legislators.” (Photo credit: Ana Francisconi/Pexels)

Parting thought…

“Keep close to Nature’s heart … and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” —John Muir

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