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3:27 PM Tue, Oct. 23rd

Letter | Vote for those who will protect your community

The National Environmental Policy Act is a law that was enacted to ensure all branches of government consider the environment before approving projects that could pose dangers, such as building roads or permitting mines.

It brings the government and the people closer by giving the people a voice on what happens within their communities.

The Four Forest Restoration Project in Arizona is a product of NEPA, and it has greatly benefited communities, natural lands, and wildlife. Arizona’s Ponderosa Forest is home to animals such as the endangered Mexican Spotted Owls, which need ample forest space to live and thrive.

The Trump Administration has been attacking various environmental safeguards, and now the White House Council on Environmental Quality is attempting to weaken NEPA, thus stripping us of opportunities to have a say in decisions that can be detrimental to our health and environment.

Without NEPA, the Mexican Spotted Owl may disappear along with Arizona’s forests.

As an intern with Defend Our Future, a non-partisan, student-led environmental group, saving NEPA and Arizona’s Ponderosa Forest is important to me.

It is critical that people vote this November and elect candidates who will stand up for our communities and our environment.

Melissa Oister

Defend Our Future intern