As 2013 winds to a close, think about all the good TU, its staff and its volunteers have done over the last 12 months to make your fishing better.
From standing firm against a vast open-pit mine in Bristol Bay (and likely influencing the pull-out of the project's major investor) to reconnecting thousands of river miles for trout and salmon all across America, TU is easily the best investment you can make for your charitable contribution, especially if you love cold, clean water and have a passion for fishing.
Our board of directors has graciously offered to match every dollar we bring in before the end of the year, up to $500,000. Think about it. Your donation of $50 will be matched by our board, making your contribution worth $100. When it's all said and done, at midnight Dec. 31, we hope to add $1 million to TU's coffers--this is cash we can use continue our on-the-ground work to make fishing better all across the United States.
In 2013, TU celebrated several major victories, including the creation of the Rio Grande del Norte Nationa Monumeent in New Mexico, a locally driven effort led largely by anglers and hunters who understand that intact habitat equals excellent sporting opportunity. In Maine, TU helped lead the effort to remove the Veazie Dam on the Penobscot River, bolstering the chances for the healthy return of Atlantic salmon to the waters of the United States.
Other efforts are showing promise, like the proposal to protect the Hermosa Creek roadless area in southwest Colorado as wilderness, again to protect intact habitat for generations of anglers to come. In Montana, TU helped U.S. Sen. Jon Tester move his Forest Jobs and Recreation Bill out of committee--this bill would create the first new wilderness areas in Montana in generations, and it would also guarantee forest products jobs in the state by identifying areas in need of thinning and harvest in order to improve overall forest health.
Also in Colorado, TU is leading the effort to create a wilderness in Browns Canyon along the fabled Arkansas River. This would protect some of the best wild brown trout fishing in the West, as well as irreplacable elk and bighorn sheep habitat. In California, salmon have returned to the San Joaquin River for the first time in 50 years thanks to TU and its volunteers.
In Southeast Alaska, TU is working to protect much of the Tongass National Forest for its priceless--and renewable--salmon resources by identifying and setting aside 77 vital salmon and trout drainages from development. This will enure healthy returns of wild fish for generations.
Literally, from coast to coast, TU is protecting the quality angling we all enjoy today while making fishing better by restoring degraded watersheds and reconnecting tributaries with mainstem rivers.
We're a good bet for your conservation contributions, and with our board matching you tax-deductible gift through the end of the year, ask yourself if there's a better way to spend your charitable dollars this holiday season--particularly if you love to fish.