National Monuments under Review as a Result of Executive Order 13792

Background: The Antiquities Act has been used by presidents to turn public land into national monuments to protect them forever from commercial development or future mineral extraction. The president can make monuments only from land already controlled by the federal government, and the act generally does not change how the land is used. If leases for mining, ranching, drilling or logging already exist, they can continue, but new leases probably won’t be allowed. A president can change the boundaries of a national monument, but the act does not give the president the authority to revoke previous monument designations. No prior president has ever reduced the size of a national monument.

Trump ordered the Interior Department to review the size and scope of national monuments larger than 100,000 acres created since 1996. He wants recommendations on whether any should be scaled back. Reducing the size of national monuments would benefit oil, gas, mining, logging and ranching because the federal government could grant more leases.

Cascade Siskiyou National Monument: Within Oregon the Cascade Siskiyou National Monument is under review. Last fall Obama expanded the monument to 113,013 acres within a footprint that covers about 137,500 acres and expands beyond southeastern Jackson County into Klamath County and northern California. Eighty-five scientists signed a letter supporting a study that showed monument expansion was necessary to protect its biological uniqueness against climate change and for continuity because monument boundaries did not take into account full drainages. Private lands inside that footprint remain private and are not subject to monument rules, which ban commercial timber harvest but allow well vetted noncommercial cutting.

Opponents, however, said the Bureau of Land Management, which manages the monument, did not have direct input in the expansion, and they have a stable of landowners, groups and politicians in their camp. Two federal lawsuits are challenging whether the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument was improperly expanded into O&C Act lands, based on a 1940 internal DOI review that concluded O&C Act lands cannot be rolled into monument status.

Assistance in Letter Writing: For additional help in letter writing regarding the monument, review the information on this site: http://www.cascadesiskiyou.org/take-action/

Here is the list of all monuments under review:

  1. Basin and Range, Nevada
  2. Bears Ears, Utah
  3. Berryessa Snow Mountain, California
  4. Canyons of the Ancients, Colorado
  5. Carrizo Plain, California
  6. Cascade Siskiyou, Oregon
  7. Craters of the Moon, Idaho
  8. Giant Sequoia, California
  9. Gold Butte, Nevada
  10. Grand Canyon-Parashant, Arizona
  11. Grand Staircase-Escalante, Utah
  12. Hanford Reach, Washington
  13. Ironwood Forest, Arizona
  14. Mojave Trails, California
  15. Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks, New Mexico
  16. Rio Grande del Norte, New Mexico
  17. Sand to Snow, California
  18. San Gabriel Mountains, California
  19. Sonoran Desert, Arizona
  20. Upper Missouri River Breaks, Montana
  21. Vermilion Cliffs, Arizona
  22. Katahadin Woods and Waters, Maine
  23. Marianas Trench, CNMI/Pacific Ocean
  24. Northeast Canyons and Seamounts, Atlantic Ocean
  25. Pacific Remote Islands, Pacific Ocean
  26. Papahanaumokuakea, Hawaii/Pacific Ocean
  27. Rose Atoll, American Samoa/Pacific Ocean

Details on How to Comment: The Department of the Interior is allowing a public comment period beginning May 13, 2017 via online or email. Comments may be submitted online after May 12 at http://www.regulations.gov by entering “DOI-2017-0002” in the Search bar and clicking “Search,” or by mail to Monument Review, MS-1530, U.S. Department of the Interior, 1849 C Street NW, Washington, DC 20240.

Press Release from DOI regarding review: https://www.doi.gov/pressreleases/interior-department-releases-list-monuments-under-review-announces-first-ever-formal

Dates: Public comment period will open May 13, 2017. Written comments relating to the Bears Ears National Monument must be submitted within 15 days of publication of that notice. Written comments relating to all other monument designations must be submitted within 60 days of that date.

One comment on “National Monuments under Review as a Result of Executive Order 13792

  1. Ellen Finazzi says:

    United States Government put Native American Reservations. National Parks(example Yellow Stone National Park) and National Monuments under the land protection act. To the American Public some of the most beautiful places in the world are viewed by thousands of people every year at National Parks and our National Parks and Monuments. Our Native American Reservations are located on the poorest land available. However all this land has huge amounts of riches under the top soil. Oil and precious metals make Oregon greed wise one of the riches states in the nation. We also have one of the riches states in clean drinking water. If greed is allowed to go after the oil and precious metals Then we put at risk our water. Water truly is life for all. With out water plants, animals and people will die in the generations to come. Every State along with Oregon is at risk of losing a natural resource that has no replacement.

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