Congress is set to vote on a Department of the Interior funding bill amendment that would block the agency from carrying out its duty to properly manage and protect priceless cultural and natural resources within the Ironwood Forest National Monument in Arizona.
The bill, (H.R.6410) sponsored by 62 members of Congress, would ensure permanent congressional protections for 51 national monuments established under the Antiquities Act from January 1996 to April 201
The company claims that “surface exploration work will start this summer on the Colt Mesa property and drill permitting will be initiated shortly.” However, these lands are part of a national monument and legally closed to mining.
Today, the Trump administration’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) auctioned off parcels of federal public lands in southeastern Utah’s spectacular redrock country for oil and gas leasing and development.
Unfortunately, BLM’s latest draft closely mirrors prior attempts that a federal court found illegal. The draft plan once again inadequately protects areas with high conservation and cultural values and prioritizes off-road vehicles over other uses.