The following is a SAMPLE letter to use as a template for your letter to the Department of Interior to encourage Sec. Deb Haaland to take action on creating Wilderness Study Areas (WSAs). Please remember to customize your letter with your own thoughts and experiences. Then be sure to let us know that you’ve written to Congress to express your feelings on this subject!


Dear Secretary Haaland,

I am writing to ask that the Department of Interior designate new Wilderness Study Areas (WSAs) across millions of acres of public lands—an authority the Department of Interior hasn’t used in over a decade.

These wilderness-quality lands harbor important wildlife habitat and migration corridors, provide backcountry recreation experiences, and serve as climate refugia for species adapting to a changing planet. These lands also sequester significant amounts of carbon, help conserve scarce water resources, and protect cultural landscapes and artifacts. WSA designation is critical to protecting these vital and deeply-endangered areas from oil and gas leasing, road construction, and other development before they are lost forever.

We need the strongest protections for our wild public lands to meet the Biden administration’s stated goal of conserving 30 percent of our nation’s lands and waters by 2030. WSAs are an important tool to making that happen—it’s time for the Department of Interior to use it.