California Desert Protection Act

At Wilderness, we're working to pass Senator Dianne Feinstein’s California Desert Protection Act to preserve the Mojave Desert’s spectacular wildlands.

This bill would preserve about 1.6 million acres with two new national monuments, five wilderness areas and many other protections for iconic places like Joshua Tree and Death Valley national parks.

Saving California’s desert will preserve a slice of the American West. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s California Desert Protection Act will protect some of the West’s most beautiful and fragile sights including:

  • Pastel mountains and rock formations
  • Hidden creeks and oases
  • Desert tortoise and other endangered species
  • Native American petroglyphs and ancient sites
  • Lava flows and volcano craters
  • Old West trails, mines and Route 66

What the Desert Protection Act will preserve in the Mojave

Photo by J. Vivante.
The midday sun lights the landscape in California's Mohave Desert.

The Mojave is squeezed between two growing urban areas: Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

Senator Dianne Feinstein’s California Desert Protection Act will protect some of the West’s most beautiful and fragile sights.

Senator Feinstein’s California Desert Protection Act will protect these wildlands for generations of visitors. If passed, this bill would create or expand:

Mojave Trails National Monument

This new national monument would bridge Joshua Tree National Park to the Mojave National Preserve. Its 941,000 acres would include:

  • Pisgah lava flow
  • Amboy Crater
  • Kelso Dunes wilderness
  • Route 66

Sand to Snow National Monument

The area of the proposed Sand to Snow Monument includes Joshua trees, granite peaks and desert tortoise habitat. It would be increased by more than 2,800 northern acres, stretching from the Coachella Valley desert floor to the forested peak of Mount San Gorgonio, Southern California’s tallest mountain. The 134,000-acre national monument would include:

  • Wildlife corridors linking Joshua Tree National Park to the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains
  • Bighorn sheep and desert tortoise habitat
  • The Whitewater RiverJoshua Tree National Park

Death Valley National Park

This national park would incorporate another 46,000 acres, including the southern geological gem known as the “Bowling Alley.”

Mojave National Preserve

This desert preserve would increase by 29,000 acres to include a former gold mining area that has been reclaimed.

Rivers and creeks

The act would protect 76 miles of Deep Creek, Amargosa River, Surprise Canyon and other waterways.

Five new wilderness areas

This act would protect federal wildlands in Death Valley National Park and other areas.

Augmenting tourism

If the desert stays beautiful, millions of international tourists will continue to visit. Death Valley and Joshua Tree national parks bring nearly three million annual visitors, and travelers spend more than $230 million annually on outdoor recreation here.

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