The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness encompasses 1,200 miles of rivers and streams and more than 1,000 lakes. As the most visited wilderness area in America, it is a major driver of the local economy. However, the Boundary Waters and its clean water are threatened by proposed sulfide-ore copper mining on public lands in the headwaters just outside of the wilderness area’s boundary. Mining and associated acid mine drainage, loss of habitat, forest fragmentation, invasive species, and air, noise and light pollution would devastate this fragile ecosystem and the wilderness area’s unique values. The Biden administration must act to protect the Boundary Waters from mining by issuing a federal mineral leasing ban, and Congress must pass legislation to forever protect this treasured place.
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