After President Trump said Monday he would reduce the protections on 85% of Bears Ears National Monument in Utah and 50% of Grand Staircase-Escalante, amounting to approximately 2 million acres now available for possible oiling, logging, and other commercial purposes, Patagonia changed the landing page of its website to the following interactive image:
In addition to providing links to organizations fighting to protect public lands and enlisting visitors’ help in taking action against POTUS’s decision, Patagonia also outlines why advocating against the president’s decision is of the utmost importance. Among the reasons the company provides:
- There is Broad Public Support for Protecting Federal Public Lands
- The Outdoor Industry Relies on Public Lands
- States Have Historically Sold Off Federal Lands
- It is a Myth that More Public Lands are Needed for Oil and Gas Development
For each of its reasons listed above, Patagonia offers research-based evidence as support for the need to protect federal land from unnecessary commercial activity and states:
Patagonia has been in the fight to protect public lands for almost 30 years— and we are proud to have played a part in the establishment of several national monuments, including Bears Ears National Monument in Utah and Basin and Range and Gold Butte National Monuments in Nevada. We are also proud to stand alongside over 350 businesses, conservation groups and Native American tribes that have come together on this issue to protect public lands. Climbers, hikers, hunters and anglers all agree that public lands are a critical part of our national heritage and these lands belong not just to us, but to future generations.
Of his decision, Trump stated:
Some people think that the natural resources of Utah should be controlled by a small handful of very distant bureaucrats located in Washington. And guess what? They’re wrong. Together, we will usher in a bright new future of wonder and wealth.
Trump’s decision to slash protections to these lands comes 11 years after President Clinton designated Grand Staircase-Escalante a National Monument and just a year after President Obama designated Bears Ears a National Monument.
Supporters of the president’s decision believe the federal government has no business regulating the land that borders their neighborhoods, while opposers, including environmentalists and Native American tribes, assert this decision will destroy the sites’ “national heritage” and the “archeological importance” of the landscape.
Some groups, including the Navajo Nation, are expected to challenge the president’s decision in court.
For many who find the current administration’s antics more akin to a walk through the Upside Down than standard political procedure, this news comes as yet another indication of just how dangerous Trump and his cronies are. And though he’s only been in office for under a year, the damage likely to result from many of his actions to date will take almost a lifetime to rectify, if they can be rectified at all.
To see Patagonia’s updated landing page, and to learn about taking action against the destruction of protected lands, visit them here.