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Let's get the miners out of our National Park System once and for all. We are not so poor that we have to dig up our National Parks to keep the economy going.

If another generation at a later time is hard pressed for the minerals in our National Park System, they will still have the option to decide what is best at that time.

Sincerely,

TASKER L. EDMISTON.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

LOS ANGELES, CALIF., October 2, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Material, and Fuel, Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SENATOR METCALF: Immediate enactment of your S. 2371 without crippling amendments, is vital to the protection of our National Park System, and the scenic and recreational resources of the nation.

It is also vital to insure some small resources for the future. Good stewardship requires no less!

You and your committee are to be congratulated for the prompt attention you are giving this urgent measure.

Please guide it through the full Committee and the Senate.

Our National Park System must be protected from strip mining, lest our choicest treasures are forever lost.

Gratefully yours,

BEULA EDMISTON.

SACRAMENTO, CALIF., October 3, 1975.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Material, and Fuel of the Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SENATOR METCALF: I am writing this letter to urge support of S. 2371 whose purpose is to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument. Times are different now than they were in 1933 when strip mining was permitted.

Our national parks are an important part of our heritage, and we have an obligation to leave them in their original beauty for the enjoyment of future generations.

Sincerely yours,

[Telegram]

(Mrs.) AFTON DILL NANCE.

SAN CLEMENTE, CALIF., October 3, 1975.

SENATOR METCALF: Urge passage S2371 to halt strip mining in Death Valley, other parks and monuments.

[Mailgram]

SEAL HARBOR, MAINE, October 5, 1975.

Senator LEE METCALF,

U.S. Senate Office Building,

Washington, D.C.

As devotees of organ pipe cactus and Death Valley National Monuments, we strongly urge approval of S2371 to end mining there.

Russ and PAM BUTCHER.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

[Mailgram]

CLAREMONT, CALIF., October 7, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Material, and Fuel of Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

Please stop strip mining in Death Valley National Monument.

DOUGLAS BLACK.

[Mailgram]

WOODLAND HILLS, CALIF., October 6, 1975.

Hon. LEE METCALF,
U.S. Senate,

Washington, D.C.

We are in 100-percent agreement with your S2371 to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument and other areas in the National Park System. Please include this in the hearing record.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

BARBARA and JOHN HOPPE.

SUNLAND, CALIF., October 6, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Materials, and Fuel of Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

Please support Senate Bill 2371.

National Parks were created to conserve the land maintain areas of beauty for the people of this country. Strip mining in them will undo all that has been done.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

PAT NEWELL. WATSONVILLE, CALIF.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Materials, and Fuel, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SENATOR: I urge the support of S. 7321 to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument repealing the 1933 law.

Coranada, Ariz.; Glacier Bay, Alaska; Mt. McKinley, Alaska; Organ Pipe Cactus, Ariz.; and Crater Lake, Oregon are also places of scenic beauty and should be preserved intact.

In Death Valley an estimated 1,200 acres are being scarred each year by talc and borate mining. We cannot allow the pursuit of short-term profits to inflict permanent environmental damage on our precious national parks and national monuments.

Please support S. 2371.
Respectfully,

IDA CHANDLER.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

INGLEWOOD, CALIF., September 30, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Materials, and Fuel, of the Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SENATOR METCALF: Our family is in favor of S. 2371, the bill to halt strip-mining in Death Valley National Monument. Please, do not let them spoil this beautiful place.

Among other things, this bill also directs the National Park Service to study the validity of existing mining claims. But at least, there is a three-year moratorium.

We also like to quote Senator Alan Cranston: "Swift action by Congress is absolutely necessary if we are to halt the destruction of Death Valley's haunting beauty."

We ask that this letter be included in the Hearing Record.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

Mrs. GEORGE KNIGHT.
GEORGE S. KNIGHT.

CAMBRIA, CALIF., October 1, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Materials, and Fuel, of the Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR MR. METCALF: This is to congratulate you on your introduction of Senate Bill 2371 to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument. Your quick response after the threat to the parks became known is gratifying. I am also

pleased to note that Senators Cranston, Tunney and Jackson have so promptly endorsed the Bill.

Europeans sometimes charge that Americans are completely materialistic. They fail to see us in action when resources that are valuable to the spirit are threatened by those with purely materialistic motives. I trust that your committee will act as quickly and as favorably on the subject Bill as have you gentlemen. To allow our superb natural heritage to be ground up for a few paltry dollars worth of minerals is like crushing and burning marble statues by old masters for the lime the marble contains.

Sincerely,

CHESTER A. THOMAS.

PALM SPRINGS, CALIF., September 27, 1975.

DEAR MR. METCALF: I would like to register my support for S. 2371 and have it included in the Hearing Record.

To say that I was shocked to read of the extent of strip mining in Death Valley is to put it mildly. Actually I was scandalized at what has been allowed to happen and mad clean through. The view from Zabriskie and other points in Death Valley are simply awe inspiring and must not be spoiled.

Sincerely yours,

MILTON V. WALKER, M.D.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

BISHOP, CALIF., November 1, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Material, and Fuel, Senate Interior Com mittee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SENATOR METCALF: We strongly support your legislation, S. 2371 which curtails mining activities in 6 units of our National Parks and Death Valley National Monument.

Especially important is Section 1 of this Bill which repeals the 1933 Act which opened Death Valley National Monument to mining. Now in the 1970's the picturesque "pick and shovel" prospector-miner has been replaced by giant, strip-mining earthmovers which tear apart the fragile desert landscape, destroying the unique resources of this scenic valley.

Thank you for your efforts on behalf of lasting protection of our National Parks and Death Valley National Monument.

Respectfully,

Mr. and Mrs. ROLLIN O. ENFIELD.
NILAND, CALIF.

DEAR SENATOR METCALF: We wish to support S2371 to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument. Strip mining in any National Monument or National Park is unthinkable and a disaster.

Best wishes,

NEWELL CHARDE.

GLENDALE, CALIF., October 2, 1975.

DEAR SIRS: I am very much in favor of S. 2371 to stop mining activities and put a moratorium period of four years on the projects. I have been concerned about the mining in Death Valley and other national parks and monumnets and am glad to see something being done.

MARCEL M. NAOUM.

SEPTEMBER 29, 1975.

SIR: As a native of the British Isles, where we are taught a reverence for our land, I am dismayed and shocked at the destruction of so unique a place as Death Valley-my acceptance of the great United States of America as my adopted home, gives me the honored responsibility to defend its natural resources-I am proud to support: S. 2371. I think it imperative to stop strip mining in Death Valley.

Very sincerely,

DIAM P. BURNFORD.

NEWPORT BEACH, CALIF., October 1, 1975.

DEAR SIRS: Strip mining in Death Valley National Monument will always be an eyesore. No trees-grass or other vegetation will ever grow to cover the scars. Even car and motorcycle tracks show for many years. Please help save a place of beauty for tomorrow.

Sincerely,

WILLIAM H. WARNECKE.

Hon. LEE METCALF,

SAN DIEGO, CALIF., September 27, 1975.

Chairman, Subcommittee on Minerals, Material and Fuel, of Senate Interior Committee, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

DEAR SIR: I urge you to support bill S. 2371 to halt strip mining in Death Valley National Monument and five other National Parks.

We have far too few areas set aside in National Parks and monuments. To have these few desecrated by strip and open pit mining, having permanent environmental damage, is foreign to the basic principle under which Parks and Monuments are established.

We must stop this desecration now before more irreparable damage is done.
Thank you.
Sincerely,

SENATE INTERIOR COMMITTEE.

KATHLEEN L. AIKEN.

VALLEY PUBLICATION, INC., Burbank, California, October 15, 1975.

DEAR SIRS: I recently learned about a bill to halt mining in national parks. I want to thank those involved with the idea, for trying to obtain much needed legislation.

I also would like to suggest a new approach to National Park management. In a country were a National Park or Forest is actually own by each and every citizen. Private enterprise ventures such as Mining and Logging have no place. I was under the impression that the creation of a National Park or Forest meant it was a park run by the government (with our taxes and entry fees) to preserve the wild life and wild lands found within it for the American People to enjoy.

Thank you,

[From the Washington Star, Sept. 10, 1975]

ANDY HORWITZ.

STRIP MINING SET FOR DEATH VALLEY; PARK SERVICE LOSES

(By Thomas Love)

Widespread strip mining is set to start soon in the most scenic portion of Death Valley National Monument, Calif., under a recent ruling by the Interior Department

Overruling a decision of the National Park Service, Interior has ruled that no action is possible to prevent what NPS officials say will forever ruin the most popular spot in the monument which draws half a million visitors a year.

The ecology of Death Valley is so fragile that the Park Service is worried about the damage caused by the grazing of wild burros and is working on a plan to control them. Scars left by roads and a pipeline built half a century ago still mar the landscape and may never heal, according to officials at the monument.

The area of the proposed open pit mines includes Zabriskie Point and Gower Gulch, the first of which provides the best-known view in Death Valley and the second the most popular hiking trail. The area was made famous by the work of nature photographer Ansel Adams.

In a memo to Interior in June, Russell E. Dickerson, acting director of the NPS, said "immediate action on this matter is imperative to forstall the threatened location of mining claims in Gower Gulch," and he proposed prohibiting all further mining in the area.

In August, the Park Service went further and proposed legislation which would prohibit any mining in Death Valley and also Glacier Bay National Monument in Alaska. Yesterday, a spokesman for the Interior Department said there are no plans for the department to take any action to block the mining.

Michele B. Metrinko, associate Interior solicitor, ruled in July that the Park Service cannot prohibit any mining in the monument because of a law enacted in 1933.

She would not respond yesterday to questions about the decision, but a department spokesmen said her ruling concluded that although the law opened the area to mining under "regulations prescribed by the secretary" of interior, that authority is limited to such areas as campgrounds and archeological sites. There is no authority to withdraw land from mining solely for scenic reasons, she said. This decision is in conflict with the decision of the NPS solicitor who ruled that authority existed to block the mining. An attorney for a respected environmental group, who asked not to be identified because he had not read the ruling, said yesterday that he believed the law allowed Interior to withdraw any part of public land from prospecting and subsequent mining.

The Park Service memo to Interior concluded that because of various legal opinions, "we feel that scenic and recreational protection" are ample reasons to withdraw the area from further prospecting and mining. The memo also said that additional mining would jeopardize any future Park Service moves to create a wilderness area at Death Valley.

According to the legislative history of the 1933 act, mining was allowed in the monument because of the "romance and mystery" of the prospectors in the area. Environmentalists insist there is little relationship between a prospetor with his burro and modern strip mining with massive earth movers.

Although there has been some mining in the area for decades, strip mining did not start until 1971, according to James Thompson, superintendent of the monument.

He estimated that 1,200 acres of the monument are now being scarred each year by strip mining for tale and two borates-ulexite and colemanite-the latter two of which are used for insulation. The demand for the two borates is increasing at a great rate because of the energy crisis.

He said that unless something is done, total mining is expected to increase by at least 50 percent in the next four years, with most of the increase in the form of strip mining.

New mining claims, ranging from 20 to 160 acres, are increasing at the rate of 200 a year, he said. Of the 1,827 claims now filed, only about 25 percent are actually being worked, a Park Service spokesman said.

There are now four open pit mines in the area, the largest of which is 3,000 feet by 600 feet and more than 200 feet deep.

[From the New York Times, Oct. 6, 1975]

CONGRESS MOVES TO HALT DEATH VALLEY STRIP MINING

(By Jon Nordheimer)

DEATH VALLEY, Calif., October 5.-Time moves slowly in the air-bending heat that rises in waves from the salt-encrusted flats and sunblasted dunes of Death Valley National Monument.

Caught in the rain shadow of the High Sierras and cut off from outside water sources for 20 centuries, Death Valley's splendid desolation appears impervious to great change.

But changes, nonetheless, has taken place, and more is possible.

For the last four years, strip mining operations have been going on inside the National Monument's boundaries as several corporate giants hunted for minerals in the ground. Now Congress is moving to change the law that permits the strip mining.

Mining inside Death Valley was made possible by Congress in 1933 a few months after the National Monument was created in a proclamation by President Hoover to preserve this exceptional resource for future generations.

The rationale for mining on public lands at the time was made on behalf of the "picturesque" pick-and-shovel miner who had been trying to scratch are out of Death Valley since the first prospectors came upon it in the mid-19th century. Concern about the future of Death Valley in the shadow of strip-mining technology came after it was learned that one company, Tenneco, a conglomerate

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