Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has submitted a report to President Trump recommending a significant reduction in the protected public acreage of Bears Ears National Monument in Utah. Conservatives for Responsible Stewardship (CRS) issued the following statement from President David Jenkins:
“As an organization that applauded the selection of Zinke as Interior Secretary, we are deeply disappointed that in his first major decision he chose to roll back protection for Bears Ears National Monument. In doing so, Secretary Zinke is abandoning the Theodore Roosevelt conservation ethic he professes, choosing instead to side with radical anti-public land zealots who seek to exploit rather than conserve.”
In writing this report, Secretary Zinke completely ignored public opinion. More than 96 percent of the public comments received so far favor keeping all of our national monuments intact and fully protected, and 88 percent of the comments from Utah support keeping the Bears Ears monument as is. Apparently the only voices that matter are the radical public land opponents in the Utah delegation and a few like-minded local officials.
In his statement, Jenkins also pointed out: “Bears Ears, with its incredible natural and cultural wealth, is exactly the kind of place the Antiquities Act was enacted to protect. That is why the overwhelming number of Americans commenting on the Trump ordered review asked Zinke to keep the monument fully protected—a fact that Secretary Zinke chose to ignore in his report.”
“National Monument protection is a Republican idea, and one that has long been embraced by genuine and thoughtful conservatives because it places America’s long-term national interests above short-sighted parochial ones.”
“President Reagan, as he so often did, put our responsibility for assets like Bears Ears in the proper perspective when he said, ‘This is our patrimony. This is what we leave to our children. And our great moral responsibility is to leave it to them either as we found it or better than we found it.’
The Trump Administration, in stark contrast, appears to have totally abandoned the long-standing—and truly conservative—ethic of conservation.”
The official comment period on the Trump Executive Order on national monuments runs through July 10th. Please submit an official comment via our Action Center portal that is tied directly to regulations.gov. It is quick and easy. Here is the link: Save America’s National Monuments.