Three million people are opposed to changes to Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments.
A near-midnight release on Friday from the Department of the Interior announced that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will be holding just four public meetings to solicit public input on the management plans for the illegally eliminated Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante national monuments in Utah. For comparison, when the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument Management plan was originally developed, the Clinton Administration held 15 meetings in six states plus Washington, D.C., over the course of two months.
The following statement is from Nada Culver, Senior Counsel and Director of the BLM Action Center at The Wilderness Society:
“Millions of Americans have already voiced their concerns about exploiting national monuments, yet this Administration fails to recognize science, economic impacts, cultural history, or the law when it comes to managing lands already named national monuments.
“There is nothing ‘public,’ or legal, about the meetings they plan to hold. It’s a fast-track scheme that shuts out nearly 3 million people who have clearly objected to any effort to open these nationally valued and significant monument lands to drilling, mining, or irresponsible development.”
On December 4, 2017, the President of the United States signed proclamations significantly reducing the boundaries of the Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears National Monuments. The proclamations reduced the boundaries of the monuments to three units within the bounds of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument and two units within the bounds of the Bears Ears National Monument. The BLM is moving forward with creating land use plans for these two monuments as well as lands excised from the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in the Kanab Field Office of the BLM.
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