This Is the Place
The Clinton administration and Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt (R) have reached a broad general agreement that could result in more than 1 million acres of wilderness in Utah’s West Desert. The still nascent deal faces potential opposition from environmentalists and county commissioners, and would need approval from Congress. Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt has the task of getting enviros to buy in, which may be challenging as the Utah Wilderness Coalition has called for 2.6 million acres of wilderness in the same area of western Utah. Leavitt must sell the agreement to country commissioners, most of whom are on record opposing so much wilderness. The deal, which is reportedly backed by Utah’s congressional delegation, doesn’t address the millions of acres of potential wilderness in the eastern and southern parts of the state.