Bozeman Daily Chronicle: Tester lauded for standing up for YNP

Montana Sen. Jon Tester is commended for proposing a permanent ban on new mining claims on public land near Yellowstone National Park. If passed, the measure would prohibit claims on two pieces of Forest Service land in Paradise Valley south of Livingston.

This proposed ban recognizes the special nature of Yellowstone Park and the surrounding region. And it deserves to become law.

The ban would affect plans by the Crevice Mining Group, which already has a claim on public land near Jardine, close to the park’s boundary. And Lucky Minerals Inc., is looking for gold deposits on private land near Emigrant Peak. Both would be prevented from expanding their mining plans by the ban.

We all benefit from the fruits of mining. But mining is a messy business. And nobody should know that better than Montanans. We have a history of despoiled land left behind by the mining industry. One need look no further than Butte’s Berkeley Pit for evidence.