Patagonia Is Firing Right At The President For Reducing National Monuments

Donald Trump To Have Purpose in Utah Hills and Their People

Both actions were in response to Trump's decision to reduce the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument by more than 800,000 acres, or 46 percent, and the Bear Ears National Monument by more than 1.1 million acres, or 85 percent, making it "the largest reduction of public-lands protection in US history", as The Post's Josh Dawsey and Juliet Eilperin reported. "To see that happen a week ago, with disparaging remarks, and now this". The Antiquities Act does not, however, grant presidents the authority to diminish or rescind the monument designations of their predecessors. "And guess what? They're wrong", Trump said when he announced his decision Monday.

Patagonia President and CEO Rose Marcario said the outdoor-apparel company will join an expected court fight against the monument reduction, which she described as the "largest elimination of protected land in American history". Nearly as soon as the reduction was announced, a deluge of lawsuits were filed on behalf of many involved in that fight - including one by a coalition of 10 conservation groups, and one by a coalition of five Native American Tribes. Others argue the Antiquities Act implicitly gives a president the power to shrink the size of a national monument-not just establish one.

A coalition of the Hopi, Ute Indian, Ute Mountain Ute, Zuni tribes and Navajo Nation sued late Monday to challenge the Bears Ears reduction, which cuts monument status for the rugged land in southeastern Utah by about 85 per cent. Bears Ears features thousands of Native American artifacts, including ancient cliff dwellings and petroglyphs. Some held signs that said, "Keep your tiny hands off our public lands", and they chanted, "Lock him up!"

Noel plans to intervene himself, filing a court brief to show support for the president's actions.

Bears Ears, created almost a year ago, will be reduced to 315 square miles.

Grand Staircase-Escalante will become three separate monuments - Grand Staircase, Escalante Canyon, and Kaiparowits - totaling more than 1 million acres.

In addition to Trump, the lawsuit also names Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke and acting director of the Bureau of Land Management Brian Steed as defendants.

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Several environmental groups filed a lawsuit hours after Trump's speech Monday. Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee. Former President Barack Obama designated Bears Ears as a national monument last December over the objections of Utah's Republican political leadership.

Past presidents have trimmed national monuments and redrawn their boundaries 18 times, according to the National Park Service. Signed by President Teddy Roosevelt in 1906, it was meant to stop the pilfering of ancient Indian artifacts from public land.

"This is a sad day for indigenous people and for America", Navajo Nation Vice President Jonathan Nez said in a written response to the decision. No president has ever revoked and replaced a national monument before because it is not legal to do so. The most recent instance came in 1963, when President John F. Kennedy slightly downsized Bandelier National Monument in New Mexico.

The laws states that once a president designates a piece of land a national monument, it can not be changed.

"The goal of the designations had been to convert multiple-use public lands into de facto national parks and wilderness areas, preventing traditional uses such as recreation, grazing, and any other economic uses of natural resources", says R.J. Smith, a senior fellow at the D.C. -based National Center for Public Policy Research.

Zinke has also recommended to Trump that Nevada's Gold Butte and Oregon's Cascade-Siskiyou monuments be reduced, though details are unclear.

Zinke, a former Republican congressman from Montana, spoke on a call with reporters on Tuesday.

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