Attack on NEPA: Trump Administration Strikes at Your Right to Know

One of our most important tools in protecting Utah’s redrock wilderness is under unprecedented attack.

As you may have heard, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)—our nation’s bedrock environmental law—is now in the Trump administration’s crosshairs.

The administration has proposed rolling back and significantly weakening NEPA, a move that  “strike[s] at the heart of the public’s right to know what our government is doing or failing to do on our behalf and to speak to the lasting impact those actions might have,” as SUWA board member Sharon Buccino put it in The New York Times.

NEPA is the legal foundation for transparent protections of our environment and public health. It ensures that Federal agencies, such as the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), thoroughly analyze and disclose to the public the environmental impacts of a proposed action, and  guarantees that relevant information is made available to the public so that they can play a role in the decision-making process.

Environmental reviews and public participation, required by NEPA, are one of the most important tools we have in the fight against climate change, and the proposed weakening of NEPA will make it easier to mine, drill, and chain our public lands.

Without the current NEPA protections, SUWA would have been unable to:

NEPA is everything when it comes to protecting Utah’s red rock wilderness.  If implemented, the Trump administration’s rollback of NEPA will, among other things, exclude climate considerations from NEPA reviews, restrict public input, and  narrow the scope of NEPA reviews.

This attack on our nation’s bedrock environmental law is unprecedented. It is counter to everything we stand for as a democracy, and is a thinly-veiled attempt to make it easier for the Trump administration to rubber stamp development permits and entrench federal climate denial, without public participation or oversight.

SUWA and partner groups are submitting comments on the proposed rollback of this critical environmental law. We’ll let you know when your voice can make a difference.

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