Submitting Effective Comments
For more information, see the
Service Web site for
the Colorado Roadless Rule
How to submit comments
Tips for writing
General talking points
If you are unable to
attend the public hearing in your area, please
in support of roadless
protection through the
Colorado Environmental Coalition's website
by e-mail to:
COComments@fsroadless.org or visit
Roadless Area Conservation—Colorado
P.O. Box 162909
Sacramento, CA 95816–2909
or faxed to 916–456–6724
The Forest Service is requesting comments about the
National Forest Roadless Areas you treasure. They are asking for
citizens to explain how they use these special places, and what it is
they value about them. Below we have provided some important facts about
roadless areas and how they benefit all Coloradans and about how portions
of the draft Rule that would allow, if not encourage, destruction of roadless characteristics.
about specific roadless areas are available
submitting comments feel free to use the talking points below, but
remember that your personal experiences and values are the most
important information you can provide the Forest Service. We urge you
to take the time to add your personal comments or reflections about
specific roadless areas, and the activities
you typically enjoy in them — it will make your comments far more
As a Coloradan from [your town/city], I ask the Forest Service to
fully protect all of Colorado’s roadless areas according to the 2001 roadless rule.
The weaker protections specific to the roadless areas in Colorado must be rejected.
Protecting these last unspoiled natural areas is a responsible, common
sense request to preserve our quality of life now, and for future
Specific Points to Raise about the Draft Colorado Roadless Rule
Mention and strongly oppose any or all of the following draft Rule provisions in your letter:
- The draft Rule would allow unlimited logging to "improve" wildlife habitat,
even though roadless areas are valuable precisely because they provide a refuge from human activities like logging.
- Some roadless areas could have road construction and logging in large areas supposedly for fuel and fire hazard reduction,
even in areas that are far away from homes where the projects would not truly protect lives and property.
- New electrical transmission lines and water pipelines could be constructed in roadless areas, along with roads to access construction sites.
- Roads, well pads and pipelines would be built for oil and gas leases issues after the date of the 2001 Rule but before a Colorado Roadless Rule becomes effective.
Important Benefits of Roadless Areas
areas are the last unspoiled parts of Colorado’s national forests. These
natural areas offer the best of Colorado’s great outdoors, where our
families experience solitude, participate in healthy recreation, and
enjoy the beauty of Nature.
lands offer some of the best hunting, fishing, hiking, backcountry
skiing, solitude, and freedom left in Colorado. Keeping them as they are
now lets us continue enjoying the outdoor activities we enjoy, making
our communities economically stable. More roads in these areas will
serve to degrade a valuable and irreplaceable resource, and provide only
short-term gains at best. Conserving our last unspoiled areas allows us
to pass our outdoor traditions to future generations.
areas provide the clean water that Coloradans need for drinking,
farming, ranching, fishing, boating, and other uses. Opening Colorado’s
roadless areas to oil and gas exploration rigs, mining, and timber
cutting can pollute the crystal clear streams that are so critical for
people and wildlife in our arid state.
areas temper the intensity of wildfire by providing a space where fire
is allowed to fulfill its natural role. Heavily roaded areas are
generally at higher risk of more frequent and more severe wildfire than
and wildlife managers suggest that a full range of ecological
communities and elevation ranges should be protected; currently, about
70% of Colorado’s well-protected lands lie at above 10,000 feet. Many of
the roadless areas in the Pike-San Isabel National Forest consist of
these under-represented lower elevations.
general information on the importance of roadless areas to Colorado
More information about
- Many of the state’s native wildlife species (including elk, deer, black
bear, lynx, and trout) rely on these havens for habitat, migration, and
survival. Many at-risk species depend on large tracts of unbroken
habitat, and exhibit road
avoidance or rely on remoteness from human activity as a key habitat
populations decline with increased road density. Research has found that
two miles of roads per square mile reduces elk populations by 50%, while
six miles of roads per square mile virtually eradicates elk populations.
and anglers cherish the solitude and freedom these areas provide.
Recreational users come from far and wide to enjoy our local undeveloped
areas, attesting to the allure of these special places, and supporting
local outfitting and other aspects of our local economy.
unbroken tracts of undisturbed habitat have been critical to the
successful re-introduction of the endangered Canada lynx in Colorado,
and roadless areas provide
the diversity of ecosystems needed for shorter-ranging species of birds,
mammals, reptiles, and amphibians, including at-risk species such as the
More information on roadless
areas’ importance to
roadless areas provide resources that sustain traditional industries and
help maintain the unique culture of the Rocky Mountain West.
More than 2.5 million tourists and numerous
new businesses and residents come to Colorado each year to enjoy
Colorado's outstanding public wild lands.
2004, almost $2.3 billion was spent in Colorado by hunters, anglers, and
wildlife watchers alone, and spending on outdoor equipment and gear
totaled $1.3 billion in that same year.
and wood products industries contribute less than one percent to the
state's pool of jobs.
Colorado, the Forest Service already has a $163 million backlog of road
maintenance and road-related restoration projects.
More information on roadless
areas’ importance to our