This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, which SELC has used to save some of the wildest places in the Southern Appalachians. Wilderness designation requires an act of Congress and affords the strongest protection possible for federal lands. Working with allies on Capitol Hill, SELC has secured wilderness designations for 53,500 acres and national scenic area status for 10,000 acres in Virginia. Today we’re working with the Tennessee Wild coalition to add nearly 20,000 acres to wilderness areas in the Cherokee National Forest. These would be the first additions to congressionally protected wilderness in Tennessee in more than a quarter-century.