The term “30×30” is rocketing around the conservation community. The goal is to protect 30 percent of the land and water in the U.S. by 2030. Clearly an ambitious goal. In this piece I wrote for the Marine Fish Conservation Network, I look at how the Biden administration’s climate change executive order handled it.
Every Monday I have the pleasure of joining Mountain Journal founder Todd Wilkinson in our “The Week That Is,” column where we discuss topical events relating to the nation’s capital city and the public land West.
This first exchange focuses on the dust-up between US Rep. Liz Cheney, who has a home in the Greater Yellowstone town of Wilson, Wyoming and those loyal to former President Trump.
Read it here > In Wyoming, Will Liz Hold The Upper Hand?
Last month one of my dreams became reality when I picked up a side hustle as Mountain Journal’s (affectionately know as MoJo) National City Correspondent. For those not familiar with MoJo (affectionately know as MoJo,) it’s a non-profit public interest publication at the intersection of people and nature in Americ’s wildest, most iconic ecosystem, the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
Here’s MoJo’s Editor’s note:
With his introductory essay below, Mountain Journal introduces Tom Sadler who brings decades of experience as a writer and veteran of navigating Washington DC policy issues—issues that require thinking and working across political divides. Sadler also has been a business entrepreneur, a fly-fishing guide and conservationist dealing with freshwater and saltwater fisheries policy. He understands the importance of clean water as much as anyone.
Here’s my inaugural article: Meet Tom Sadler, MoJo’s Correspondent In The US Capital City
Monitoring what’s happening in Washington DC has never been more important. for policies shaping greater Yellowstone and the West.
Links to future article will appear after they are published on MoJo
Please subscribe to the newsletter and support the cause in the sidebar of the MoJo website.
* sorry, I couldn’t resist, the headline wrote itself…
I can only believe that if Range was alive today he would be happy to see that this new administration heralds a better future for those things we hold near and dear. I also believe he would continue to be proud of how his wisdom has lived on and of those who fight the good fight, they are true keepers of his faith.
The following is a tribute I wrote for the News Virginian in 2009. I don’t think I can do any better today and still have tears in my eyes. May his wisdom live on in all of us.
There are some columns one would prefer never to write. This is one of them.
Please indulge me as I reflect on two people who are no longer with us. Not to mourn their loss so much as to celebrate their lives.
On Tuesday morning one of my very closest friends lost his battle with cancer.
He was like a brother to me. The best man in my wedding, a hunting and fishing partner of many years and the voice on the other end of the phone keeping me strong when trouble came. And oh, the whiskey we drank.
Many of you have never heard of James D. Range. But all of you have been touched by his work. He was a conservation hero. Embodying a conservation ethic on the scale of Roosevelt, Leopold, Muir and Pinchot.
One of my most cherished memories, from many years ago, is standing with him in my dining room one night. We got choked up looking out at the fields and woods where I lived.
He told me that not a lot of folks were willing to protect the things he, I and many of you love so much like fish, wildlife and the wild things of this earth. He said, “Tommy we have to protect the wild things. If we don’t do it, it won’t get done.”
Tears streamed down our faces. Big men do cry.
Range was a modern architect of natural resource conservation. A skilled bipartisan policy and political genius with an extraordinary network of friends and contacts.
Range had wonderful oratorical gifts, a way of always speaking from his heart, sometimes in language not fit for a family newspaper. You may not have liked what he said but you surely knew what he thought.
He was the personification of “if they don’t see the light, we can surely make them feel the heat.”
Range’s fingerprints are all over the nation’s conservation laws, including the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. His championing of conservation tax incentives earned him a profile in Time magazine.
He ably chaired the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership’s Board of Directors pouring his enormous energy into its resurrection.
He served with distinction and candor on the Board’s of Trout Unlimited, the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, the American Sportfishing Association, Ducks Unlimited, the American Bird Conservancy, the Pacific Forest Trust, the Valles Caldera Trust and the Yellowstone Park Foundation.
Range was an original board member of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, helping to chart the outstanding course it is on today. He also held presidential appointments to the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin and the Sportfishing and Boating Partnership Council.
In 2003, Range received the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Great Blue Heron Award, the highest honor given to an individual at the national level by the Department.
He was also awarded the 2003 Outdoor Life Magazine Conservationist of the Year Award and the Norville Prosser Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Sportfishing Association.
Range’s greatest love was the outdoors. He fished and hunted all over the world. I suspect he was happiest however, at his place on the Missouri River near Craig, Mont.
Flyway Ranch was his sanctuary. A sanctuary, which, in typical Range fashion, he shared with friends and colleagues so they too could enjoy a respite from challenges both personal and professional.
Beside his multitude of friends and admirers, Range is survived by his father, Dr. James Range of Johnson City, Tenn., brothers John Neel, Harry and Peter, twin daughters Allison and Kimberly, and loyal bird dogs Plague, Tench and Sky.
Range may be gone but we will be telling stories about him for the rest of our lives.
The Valley lost another friend recently as well. She was one of Range’s favorite people and the mother of his girlfriend Anni.
Jean Marion Gregory Ince, died on Jan. 12 at the University of Virginia Hospital in Charlottesville. She and her husband Eugene St. Clair Ince, Jr. and her beloved golden retriever “Meg” were residents of Madison.
Like Range, Jean Ince was a giver. She and Meg, a certified therapy dog, worked with patients at the Kluge Children’s Rehabilitation Center in Charlottesville and at the Augusta Medical Center in Fishersville.
Anni told me her mom, like Range, loved the outdoors and animals, particularly horses and dogs. She said that love was passed on to her children and grandchildren as well.
Jean and Bud enjoyed a special relationship. They wrote about it in the December 1978 issue of GOURMET Magazine. An Evening at the Waldorf chronicles the evening of their engagement.
It is a wonderfully engaging story of a young couple, a special hotel, and a time when doing for others was a common practice.
I hope you will take a moment to read it. It is a gift that will make any day a better one.
You can find a copy of An Evening at the Waldorf at http://www.usna.org/family/waldorf.html.
Jim Range and Jean Ince have made our world a better place. Their friends and families miss them but their memories will warm our hearts forever.
I’m still having a hard time finding words to express my outrage over the horrifying events of January 6 in our nation’s capital. Until I can, Michael Gerson’s column, The U.S. must punish sedition — or risk more of it, in The Washington Post, will suffice. He captures much of what is going through my mind at this moment.
First and foremost, the murder of United States Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick defines the outrage I feel. Gerson writes of it:
One moment captured on video stands out to me for its brutality and symbolism. An insurrectionist pulls a police officer down the steps of the Capitol, where he is stomped and beaten with the pole of a U.S. flag. The crowd chants “USA, USA.”
Gerson notes that Republican appeasement to Trump and his sycophants has lead to what we witnessed on January 6. The path forward is clear.
Stopping this rot in the political order will require accountability. That begins with the president, who deserves every legal and constitutional consequence our system offers. He should be impeached for sedition. He should be prevented from holding any further elective office. He should be stripped of all the perks of the post-presidency. He should be prosecuted for insurrection against the U.S. government.
Those appeasement should come at a price.
But the responsibility does not end with a single man. Many elected Republicans enabled the president’s political rise. Trump could only attempt the occupation of the Capitol because he had already occupied the Republican Party — in that case, with little resistance. Elected Republicans who cheered that takeover deserve to lose, and lose, and lose, until their party is either destroyed or transformed.
As Gerson notes in his title, this sedition cannot go unpunished or it will continue.
There are not enough words to express how happy this makes me. Bravo to President-elect Biden for the historic and long overdue appointment.