Here’s what is happening this month with the redrock:
1. Thank President Obama for designating new national monuments.
2. Take action to protect the Gunnison sage grouse!
3. Ask your members of Congress to support Utah wilderness protection.
4. Activists overcome a storm to advocate for the redrock in DC.
5. See a Utah wilderness slideshow near you and get involved this spring!
Camp inside the South Fork of Robbers Roost in
the proposed Greater Canyonlands National
Monument. Copyright Seth Andersen.
Did you hear the news? On Monday, President Obama designated the largest new national monument of his administration in New Mexico – El Rio Grande Del Norte National Monument.
This is a big deal for those of us in Utah calling for the protection of the Greater Canyonlands region, as this is the first time the President has used the Antiquities Act to protect a large threatened landscape like those we’re working to protect in Utah’s redrock canyon country.
Please thank President Obama for using the Antiquities Act to protect public lands and then urge him to protect Greater Canyonlands!
The more he hears that the public supports greater land protections, the more likely he is to protect the wild Utah landscapes that we love — including Greater Canyonlands. Please take a moment to send a thank-you to President Obama today!
Spring is coming and soon the Gunnison sage grouse, one of the most imperiled species in the United States, will be dancing at sunrise southeast of Moab to attract mates. Meanwhile, these fascinating birds may be about to get the protection they need to avoid becoming extinct, but they need your help.
Fewer than 5,000 Gunnison sage grouse remain, occurring in less than 10 percent of their historic range. The remaining small and isolated populations are at risk due to poorly managed development and other threats.
The USFWS has a chance to save the Gunnison sage grouse from extinction by protecting this bird under the Endangered Species Act and designating the habitat that the birds need to survive as “critical habitat”. In Utah, roughly 3,000 acres of redrock wilderness overlaps with the proposed critical habitat designation.
Decisive actions like these could put these birds on the road to recovery, but the USFWS needs to hear from you. Take action! Please send USFWS director Dan Ashe an email in support of protecting the Gunnison sage grouse.
Thank you for helping to make sure that future generations can marvel at the Gunnison sage grouse.
For more information, read this recent New York Times op-ed urging the USFWS to protect the Gunnison sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act.
Later this spring, redrock champions Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ) will re-introduce America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act, legislation that would protect over 9 million acres of spectacular public lands in Utah.
Having a long list of original cosponsors – those other members of Congress who sign on in support of the bill – from throughout the country at the time of introduction will help display our strength as Utah wilderness advocates.
Will you help us add to this list?
Here are 3 easy actions you can take:
Wilderness Week activists from Utah meet with the White House Council on
Environmental Quality about protecting Greater Canyonlands.
We can never overstate how much grassroots support for protecting Utah wilderness has helped to advance the cause. For the Utah Wilderness Coalition’s biannual Wilderness Week in Washington, DC, about 31 fabulous redrock activists traveled from Utah and across the country to ask members of Congress to cosponsor America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act (ARRWA), a piece of legislation that would protect over 9 million acres of Utah wilderness. Utah activists also met with administration officials about protecting Greater Canyonlands and urged members of Congress to defend the President’s authority to designate national monuments through the Antiquities Act. They even perservered through a storm that resulted in many cancelled flights and extra days in DC. Thanks to all of this year’s Wilderness Week participants!
In addition to the inspiring activism by the Wilderness Week participants mentioned above, redrock activists throughout the country have been busy advocating for Utah wilderness protection. Earlier this month, the Wisconsin Friends for Utah Wilderness collected 500 postcards in support of protecting Greater Canyonlands and America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act at a local event. And the Mainers for Utah Wilderness have begun a letter collecting drive to convince their new senator to cosponsor ARRWA!
The Moab Earth Day Bazaar will once again celebrate an “Ode to Greater Canyonlands”. Click here to RSVP and invite friends on Facebook.
Also, SUWA’s grassroots organizers are back in action in the East and Midwest regions!
Click here for the upcoming schedule of presentations and events. To suggest a venue or group for a presentation in your area, please contact Clayton (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the Midwest and Jackie (email@example.com) in the East.
Sign the petition to protect Greater Canyonlands