ICYMI: Door County Pulse: Gallagher Saving Our Shores
Washington, D.C. – In case you missed it, the Door County Pulse highlighted Rep. Mike Gallagher’s work on the Save the Bay initiative in an article published last week applauding his focus on creating a healthy economy and environment, and calling it a “refreshing take.”
Save the Bay is a Northeast Wisconsin collaborative initiative in which agriculture, academia, industry, government and nonprofit leaders identify, share and promote conservation practices to reduce phosphorus, nitrogen and sediment flowing into the waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan. Save the Bay was started by former 8th District Congressman Reid Ribble and Rep. Gallagher has pledged his commitment to continuing this mission for cleaner water and a healthier Lake Michigan. Read an excerpt from the Door County Pulse’s article below:
Saving Our Shores: Gallagher Continues Save the Bay Initiative
Door County Pulse
By: Jim Lundstrom & Jackson Parr
Mike Gallagher, the 33-year-old Republican who was elected to replace Ribble, said continuing the Save the Bay initiative was a no-brainer. In fact, Gallagher has a refreshing take on it.
“I consider myself a conservative and conservationist,” he said. “I’m a younger member of Congress. I often think one of the best ways to reach millennials, younger folks, is to talk about environmental issues, which may not be something that most Republicans are comfortable doing, but I think it’s something we need to do more of. Don’t force that false choice between our economy and our environment. I reject that choice. I think we can be environmentally friendly and economically strong at the same time.”
So Gallagher was well aware of the Save the Bay initiative, and he was impressed by the approach Ribble took.
“I was inspired by how Reid was able to bring together all these different stakeholders in Northeast Wisconsin,” Gallagher said. “If you are able to bring people to the table, I just believe that you are able to identify bottom-up solutions. Getting farmers and manufacturers to talk to academics and conservationists is a good thing. We need more of that bottom-up bipartisan problem solving rather than just fingerpointing. Hopefully Save the Bay can help other people to take this approach. How do we solve problems from the bottom-up rather than just talking past each other?”
Beyond that, Gallagher said he was encouraged by both farmers and conservationists to continue the initiative.
“I’m really excited about what we’re doing,” Gallagher said. “I do feel like we’re at a point now because of the conversation that was started by my predecessor and others, we are starting to identify some really innovative techniques. I think this is precisely the moment where we should be encouraging that and building on it. That isn’t to say we’re going to find a silver bullet solution to all of these problems. Maybe the solution that works for us in northeastern Wisconsin is different from some of the farmers down near Madison, but the more sharing of information and best practices, the better off we’ll be.”
Gallagher said he was happy with the turnout for his first Save the Bay meeting on February 21, 2017. It reminded him that a lot of talented, successful people are putting their minds and energy toward clean water efforts.
“I’d rather we be at the leading edge of it. I see no reason why Northeast Wisconsin can’t end up being a world leader when it comes to some of these best practices, and if we do that right, that’s a really exciting future we’re looking at,” he said. “We have some of the world’s best farmers. We live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. And we just have this Midwestern work ethic, sort of humble, hardworking ethos, and the spirit of civic duty and being a good neighbor. Those things combined should set us up for success in this area.”