|AZ Land Exchange Dies in Congress – Oak Flat Fight Continues |
With the expiration of the 112th U.S. Congress, the current land exchange bill that would have conveyed the Oak Flat, AZ climbing areas to Resolution Copper Company died. The bill, known as HR 1904, was the 11th land exchange bill introduced into Congress on behalf of Resolution Copper since 2005, but due to significant opposition by the climbing community, environmentalists, and Native Americans, each of these bills have died before they could become law.
The Access Fund hired a dedicated staff member last year to fight the proposed land exchange. We are pleased to report that, for now, the Oak Flat area remains public land administered by the Tonto National Forest. However there has already been talk about introducing a 12th land exchange bill into the new 113th Congress that was sworn in on January 3rd.
The Access Fund will continue to work with local climbers, local conservation groups, and decision makers in Washington, DC to assure any future bills are in the best interest of the climbing community.