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Mr. KEANE. I could not answer that question other than to say that geological technology changes all the time.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes. But I am just trying to find how long we should wait. You are saying do not do this until. How long do you think “until” is? How long do you imagine it will be?
Mr. KEANE. Mr. Chadwick, I believe, answered that better than I could, in stating that unaccessible areas are the last places to be prospected and mined. I would state that in Idaho in its present state of economy it is probably another 20 or 30 years, although I know that certain parties are interested in the Selway-Bitterroot Primitive Area—a mining venture at this time.
The CHAIRMAN. That is fine. I think they would be interested in this bill because if this bill does not pass the Forest Service, anytime it wanted to, can move that Selway district from a primitive area to a wilderness area, could it not?
Mr. KEANE. That is true, but we could still locate the mine under the existing law.
The CHAIRMAN. It would be established in a wilderness area? I am wondering about this geological evaluation. How rapidly is it going on now?
Mr. KEANE. Not to any great extent. I know of one or two ventures as far as prospecting in the primitive areas of Idaho at this time. Possibly there are more, but I am not qualified nor would I want to be quoted.
The CHAIRMAN. Out of 3 million acres? Mr. KEANE. That is true. The CHAIRMAN. Very well. Mr. KEANE. In our opinion there is no pressing need for the passage of S. 174, and certainly not in advance of the report of the National Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission, which report would give the committee additional information in advance of enacting legislation of this type. The primitive areas in Idaho have remained virtually unchanged through more than 100 years of western development. There has been no commercial enterprise which has damaged any of the beauty of the primitive areas. Under the existing law there will be no change in these conditions until such a time as a commercial development may transcend their value as wilderness. Then the doctrine of the Multiple-Use Sustained-Yield Act of "the greatest good for the greatest number" would be applied.
I am personally familiar with the three primitive areas in Idaho and I appreciate wilderness areas. However, I also realize that virtually the entire economy of the State of Idaho is derived from natural resources. An area comprising 4,687 square miles, which is approximately 4 times as large as the State of Rhode Island, would be withdrawn from development of mining in Idaho if S. 174 becomes law. The whole Nation is vitally concerned about natural resources since all our economy is fundamentally based on natural resources. The passage of S. 174 would be detrimental to mining and it would damage the future economy of the State of Idaho.
A memorial has been passed by the Legislature of the State of Idaho in opposition to S. 174 and this memorial endorses the doctrine of multiple use. The senior Senator of Idaho has already introduced this memorial as a part of the record of this hearing.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you.
Senator CHURCH. I have no questions, Mr. Chairman, except to say that Mr. Keane is a well-known attorney in north Idaho who is associated with mining interests there and comes here with a very fine reputation, and I am pleased to welcome him to the committee and want to thank him for his testimony.
Mr. KEANE. Thank you, Senator.
Coming from Wallace, I presume you are well aware of the almost fantastic performance of the Lucky Friday Mine whose stock was selling for a nickle or a dime here a few years ago. What does that stock sell for today?
Mr. KEANE. Approximately $20. I do not have the latest quote.
Senator DWORSHAK. And they are producing a lot of minerals there in the last few years?
Mr. KEANE. That is true. In the year 1939 this ground was sold as a tax sale.
Senator DWORSHAK. In 1939 it was sold as a tax sale?
The CHAIRMAN. We will adjourn now to 10 o'clock tomorrow morning.
(Whereupon, the committee recessed at 5:20 p.m., Monday, February 27, 1961, to reconvene at 10 a.m., Tuesday, February 28, 1961.)
THE WILDERNESS ACT
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 28, 1961
Washington, D.C. The committee met, pursuant to recess, at 10 a.m., in room 3110, New Senate Office Building, Senator Clinton P. Anderson (chairman of the committee) presiding.
Present: Senators Anderson, Gruening, Long of Hawaii, Metcalf, Hickey, Dworshak, Kuchel, and Allott.
The CHAIRMAN. We will hear first, this morning, from the senior Senator from Wyoming, Senator McGee, who was an able member of the Select Committee on Water Resources and is always interested in the best use of our resources.
STATEMENT OF HON. GALE W. McGEE, A U.S. SENATOR FROM THE
STATE OF WYOMING
Senator McGEE. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Those of us who live in the Rocky Mountain States have a very real stake in the decision as to whether or not we should set aside wilderness areas. Our interest, however, is an obvious one. Not so obvious is the stake which citizens of every State have in the setting aside of areas which may be far from their homes and have little to do with their livelihood.
It is a fact, however, that our population is increasing very rapidly in both numbers and mobility. These increases are going to put an additional burden upon our resources during the coming decades. Now, while there is still time to make decisions as to the orderly development of these resources, seems an appropriate time to provide adequate recreational opportunities for the future. We are still rich enough in the vital resource of space to provide for future generations the opportunity to make their own decisions as to the wisest use of the areas which this legislation would block out.
While it is true, and it seems to me this is one of the advantages of the present legislation, that by its enactment useful resources would be preserved from exploitation, it is also true that relatively little commercially valuable timber and relatively few known mineral deposits are situated upon lands which are or will be covered by this act. An additional safeguard to the public interest is a proviso to reserve to the Congress the right to pass upon future withdrawals for wilderness purposes.
Certainly this is a wise provision because of the complexity which the question of additional wilderness land will always involve. Those of us who are in favor of this legislation realize full well the relationship of our public domain to the future of industries vital to the economy of the West and the Nation. It is for this central reason that these future decisions as to the creation of wilderness areas must be reviewed by Congress. Without this legislation, however, future generations will find that the areas which might have been available for use by all of the American people, will have been allocated to other purposes. If we do not provide for wilderness areas now, we will have lost the chance to set aside for our children and grandchildren either areas for recreation or areas for decision.
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Harrison A. Williams of New Jersey is a cosponsor of the bill before us. We are very pleased to have his views.
STATEMENT OF HON. HARRISON A. WILLIAMS, A U.S. SENATOR
FROM THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY Senator WILLIAMS. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity to express my strong support for S. 174, the wilderness bill. The need for such legislation was clearly documented in a series of articles appearing in the current issue of the Atlantic Monthly, entitled "Our National Parks in Jeopardy.”
The articles point out that in 1959, more than 22 million visitors were recorded in our national parks, and 5 million in the national nature monuments, an increase of 14 million over the highest preWorld War II figure. The Mission 66 program of the National Park Service estimates that 80 million people will be visiting our national parks by 1966.
Our rapidly increasing standard of living, mobility, and leisure time are paving the way for enormously greater demands and pressures on our public lands than we have ever known before. And the unpleasant truth is that unless vigorous steps are taken, the great national parks and forest preserves that we now treasure will become the park slums of the future.
One vital step is to preserve at least a small portion of our Federal forest, park, and refuge land in its present wilderness state so that it may remain unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.
But this step, while essential, will not lessen the mounting demands for recreation opportunities. I believe more attention should be paid to providing more recreation, conservation, and scenic areas in and around our urban areas—where the great majority of people actually live-if we are to achieve a long-range solution in preserving the splendor of our land.
This, of course, is a much broader question, involving many factors that influence the present patterns of urban growth and development. I hope, as the Congress proceeds to consider the impact of urban sprawl on open-space land, that it will not neglect the vital first step of preserving what we now have from piecemeal encroachment.
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota was the author of S. 1176 in the 85th Congressthe first wilderness bill on which hearings were held. (He had introduced S. 4013 late in the 84th Congress for study purposes.) He started the effort to preserve some of our great natural areas in their primitive condition, and he has worked patiently to help develop satisfactory legislation. We are very happy to get his views on S. 174 which, I believe, is a fifthgeneration bill. There have been S. 4013 and 'S. 1176, then S. 4028, then S. 1123, and S. 3809—all progenitors of S. 174.
STATEMENT OF HON. HUBERT H. HUMPHREY, A U.S. SENATOR
FROM THE STATE OF MINNESOTA
Senator HUMPHREY. Mr. Chairman, members of the committee, I thank you very much for this privilege of testifying in support of the wilderness bill, S. 174, and I commend especially Senator Anderson for his leadership in developing this legislation and advancing its consideration. I am proud to be a cosponsor of this important measure.
This is an excellent measure, one that should make sure that some parts of America may always remain unspoiled and beautiful in their own natural way, untrammeled by man and unmarred by machinery. I am happy to be among its cosponsors. It is a measure that gives expression to a policy which has long been a reality in the minds and hearts of the American people but has never yet been embodied in legislation. If these hearings lead—as I believe they should and trust they will—to the enactment of this congressional charter for wilderness, this occasion will long be looked upon as one with historic significance.
After the conference on northwest wilderness held in Portland, Oreg., in April of 1956, when we were developing a wilderness bill in draft form for the first time and submitting it for criticism and suggestions—2 months before its first introduction-one of the participants in the conference wrote me a letter and said:
The proposal to establish a national wilderness preservation system, in which your role is so prominent, was presented to us and talked about in great detail at the conference banquet-its first unveiling before the general public. Then, and all the following daysaid this letterthere was something that made us sense that we were participating in an event of special significance.
Mr. Chairman, I think we feel that way here today. After a decade of earnest study on the part of organizations and individuals devoted to the public interest in preserving some of the remnants of primeval America that are still within our keeping as citizens, we undertook some 5 years ago to formulate a legislative program that would accomplish our preservation purposes without damaging any other public program or sacrificing any other existing interests. For 4 years, through two Congresses, this measure has been subjected to hearings, criticisms, revisions, and reintroductions. We now have in Senator Anderson's S. 174 the culmination of all this that has
ne before, and I want to commend this bill heartily and urge that it be promptly and favorably reported to the Senate.
The consideration that you, Mr. Chairman, and your colleagues are now so earnestly giving this proposal is a significant contribution to the conservation history of this country, and I do indeed feel it a privilege to be a participant.