Here is the link to the original proposal.
Below are updates on Secretary Zinke’s recommendations, starting with the most recent.
- 7/13/17 – Secretary Zinke Announces Recommendation on Idaho’s Craters of the Moon and Washington’s Hanford Reach National Monuments (Hooray!)
Secretary Zinke recommended that two NO CHANGES be made to Craters of the Moon National Monument and Hanford Reach National Monument! Thank you to everyone who took the time to register comment. YOUR VOICE MATTERS. Two more down, twenty-four to go…let’s hope this is a good omen.
The first response to Executive Order 13792 and 13795 is a recommendation to decrease the size of the Bears Ears National Monument. Unfortunately, I am not too surprised at this choice by Secretary Zinke. Bears Ears was one of the last Antiquities Act action by President Obama and, seemingly, one of the most contested.
As it stands, Bears Ears encompasses almost 1.5 million acres of land that is estimated to contain more than 100,000 cultural and archaeological sites and boasts more archaeological sites per square mile-250, 000 sites- than any other county in the nation. The land is also the resting place of many Native Americans and the land is considered sacred to several tribes.
Multiple destructive incidents have occurred in the Bears Ears area, including the removal of part of an ancient petroglyph, rock art vandalism, grave robbing, and ATV riders who left the designated trail and drove over two archeological sites, and a fire ring was made out of materials from a 2,000-year-old to 3,000-year-old archeological site.
Six of seven Navajo Chapters in Utah have passed resolution in favor or protecting Bears Ears. So has the Navajo Nation Council. The five nations with in the Inter-tribal coalition are also in support of the national monument. 21 other southwestern tribes also support Bears Ears, along with 225 other tribes represented in the National Congress if American Indians. Colorado College’s 2016 State of the Rockies Project Conservation West Poll also showed that 66% of Utahns also support Bears Ears.
To learn more about protecting Bears Ears, visit the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition.