Members of Utah’s congressional caucus, not content with eviscerating two national monuments in the state, have unleashed a new assault on public lands, proposing legislation that hides an agenda of deregulation behind the shield of the National Park Service and the beloved park system it oversees.
This is only the latest attempt to subvert public lands in the US. These attempts are generally covert, often sponsored by Utah politicians, and always backed by oil money. See the Background articles below for more examples. It's all part of a pattern. Once exposed they often wither. The key is to get the word out and pressure our Representatives. You can:
contact your Representative. I find Resist.bot helpful. You can use SMS or Facebook Messanger and it makes it all super-easy. My note is pictured below. Alternatively, contact info for the House is here. The bill is HB 4558.
use your influence:let fellow outdoor geeks know and suggest action...particularly if they have Republican Reps in the House. These things thrive in the dark.
While we're at it let me mention a few other items.
First, ex-Mountain Hardwear stalwart, Chris Lopez, is battling a rare and aggressive cancer and his support network has created a GoFundMe page for him.
[Termed the Grand Staircase Escalante Enhancement Act] a reading of the bill, H.R. 4558, reveals it as a Trojan horse, appearing as a gift to the public while eroding federal environmental protections on public lands. If it becomes law, the bill could set a precedent with enormous consequences nationally, all of them bad for the national parks and the park service, which celebrates its 102nd birthday this August. It is, in fact, a model for the piecemeal unraveling of the more than 400 national parks, monuments, battlefields, historic sites, recreation areas and other places in the park system.
The National Parks Conservation Association, an advocacy group for the park system, contends the legislation would “undermine the meaning and value of a national park."
Earlier attempts to subvert public lands with details on the money behind the effort.
A quick note: there have been some weird bot subscribes to this newsletter using hijacked email addresses. While I think everyone, even bots, would likely fall in love with what we've got here, I've moved the unsubscribe link up top for those unconvinced.