Petition update

Wisconsin DNR approves wetlands permit for Kohler golf course on Lake Michigan shore

Friends of The Black River Forest

Jan 19, 2018 — The DNR has written its final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Kohler golf course. As soon as the final EIS was signed, before the ink was dry, the wetland fill permit was signed. This will allow Kohler to fill in GLOBALLY rare ridge and swale dunes.

The DNR has proceeded without addressing serious impacts raised by the public, environmentalists, and scientists.

The DNR themselves cited potential impacts of the course:  
• The course could harm state endangered or threatened species...
11 that inhabit the property or nearby. 
• Users of Kohler-Andrae could experience noise and disruption during construction of the golf course. In addition, on weekends and during special events, more congestion for golfers and park users is likely. 
• The effect on property values is unclear. But the DNR said studies have shown land values more than 1,500 feet from golf courses have dropped. 
• Groundwater levels could also drop near the course, depending on the amount of irrigation. 
• The sandy soil of the region could mean pesticides and fertilizer could leach into the groundwater and wash into the Black River and Lake Michigan. 
• The substantial loss of forests for fairways, greens and a clubhouse will mean the loss of habitat for birds, especially those that use shorelines as a migratory corridor.  

It’s incredible the DNR acknowledges the wetlands and species involved are globally rare on the one hand, but still issues the permit.

The next step for Kohler to destroy the environment along with the Kohler Andrae State Park is getting the DNR to change the master plan for the State Park at the Jan 24, 2018 Natural Resources Board meeting. Kohler wants to take our state park land for their entrance and build three maintenance/storage sheds. We are speculating they don't want the "junk" on their property.

If Kohler wants a golf course and the DNR is willing to allow destruction of globally rare wetlands, plants and animal species, then Kohler should build entirely on their property and STAY AWAY from our state park.

Keep sharing this petition to let the Wisconsin DNR know that Wisconsin residents expect them to protect our state parks.


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