Snowmobile ban should stand

  Dear HCN,
I am writing in response to an article written by Ray Ring (HCN, 11/25/02: Feds bail on snowmobile ban), regarding the National Park Service bailing out on the proposed snowmobile ban in Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. I think this measure is totally wrong, considering that the Park Service has vehemently pushed this issue from the outset. Why, after a 3-year process that included 22 public hearings and over 65,000 public comments, should they scrap a decision of a four-year phase-out of snowmobiles? The Environmental Protection Agency has reported that a snowmobile ban is the best available protection for air quality, wildlife and health of people who work for and visit the parks.

President Clinton had it right in his decision to ban these machines in the popular Western parks by next winter. Yellowstone is a "signature park." It is a place that needs to be protected, no matter what it takes. The Park Service should forge ahead and not place an importance on someone’s livelihood or financial profit to a particular industry. Human health and wildlife safety and conservation should be at the forefront. There are numerous places where one can enjoy a snowmobile without the hazards it causes being an issue.

Gary Medley
Fort Collins, Colorado
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