Redrock Report Archives - Page 5 of 12

  • July 1st, 2014


    How Dust on Colorado’s Snow Could Ruin Your Salad

    Dust on Colorado Snow, San Juan Mtns“If your lettuce doesn’t get grown in California, you notice that in Washington, D.C.” So says Jayne Belnap, an ecologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in a must-read piece from Climate Progress on how increasing dust from industrial development on the Colorado Plateau (including Greater Canyonlands) is threatening the Southwest’s most critical watershed. “Dust has to become part of [our] land management goals,” Belknap says. One way to manage growing dust in an era of changing climate is to protect large landscapes like Greater Canyonlands. After you read the article, encourage President Obama to take action.

    BLM’s Moab Master Leasing Plan Begins to Take Shape

    Labyrinth CanyonThis spring the BLM released three preliminary alternatives of the Moab Master Leasing Plan (MLP) for public review and comment. This plan will determine what lands are available for oil, gas and potash leases and permits in large areas of public land close to Canyonlands and Arches National Parks.  It also covers many outstanding proposed wilderness areas including Labyrinth Canyon, Fisher Towers and Harts Point/Shay Mountain.

    We support Alternative C, which would give the most protection to lands proposed for wilderness in America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act.  The BLM plans to release a draft of the plan and an environmental impact statement this fall; a final MLP should follow by fall 2015.

    >> Learn more about the Moab MLP on the BLM’s website.

    Senator Tammy BaldwinSen. Baldwin’s Red Rock Cosponsorship Ties Senate Record

    Just before Memorial Day, Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin became the 23rd member of the Senate—and the seventh member of the crucial Energy and Natural Resources Committee—to cosponsor the bill in this congress. Her addition ties the all-time record for Senate cosponsors and fills the void of Wisconsin Senate support created when Sen. Russ Feingold was defeated.  Thank you, Sen. Baldwin!

    Needed: Health “Testimonials for Greater Canyonlands

    SUWA is working with a team of health and well being professionals in Utah on a letter to President Obama asking him to protect Greater Canyonlands because of the physical, emotional and public health benefits to all Americans.  We are looking for short one-page or less statements or “testimonials” by people (especially Utah residents)  who have benefited in terms of physical or mental health/well-being by spending time in wild nature.  This might be an individual (or family) who:

    • Hikes in the great outdoors as a way to stay physically healthy (thus reducing the risk of heart disease, obesity, diabetes or other conditions)
    • Found emotional healing by spending time in wild nature.  This might be someone who has suffered trauma or experienced emotional challenges and finds solace or rejuvenation in nature.
    • Has experienced the health benefits of living near or experiencing the clean air and water protected by large natural areas.

    Please contact Terri at immediately for more information or if you are willing to write a testimonial.

    Also, if you are a Utah-based health or well-being professional (doctor, nurse, health aide or technician, mental health worker, “alternative” well-being practitioner, body worker or healer of any kind) and want to add your name to the letter, please contact Terri at

    Crazy Continues in Carbon County

    Even though a Federal Judge struck down a similar state law last year, the Carbon County Commission passed a resolution on June 5th proclaiming “that any attempted law enforcement by an official of a federal land agency is not recognized by the county, and shall be deemed an imminent threat to the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Carbon County.” Castle Country Radio reports that “the resolution advises that any federal official who intends to exercise law enforcement powers shall first declare to the Sheriff his [sic] intent to enter Carbon County and the intended action on a case by case basis.”  Further proof that crazy (and unconstitutional) ideas are alive and well among many elected officials in Utah.

    SUWA Website Gets a New Look

    We’re pleased to announce that SUWA’s website is now tablet and mobile friendly!  Plus, with lots of beautiful new pictures! Check it out on your phone, laptop or tablet at

    New SUWA Website
  • January 23rd, 2014

    Last year the BLM proposed to sell 57 oil and gas leases primarily located in Utah’s stunning San Rafael Swell.  The leases would have green-lighted development on more than 80,000 acres of proposed wilderness, the vast majority of which the BLM itself acknowledges are wilderness-caliber landscapes.  The leases would have also authorized surface activities in a culturally rich area and over the objections of The Hopi Tribe.

    Hundreds of people wrote and emailed the BLM asking them to “think first and lease later.”  More than 150 of you rallied at the BLM’s state headquarters in Salt Lake City and delivered this message personally.  Thanks to your hard work that bad idea was tabled in the days leading up to the proposed sale and the leases were withdrawn from the sale.

    But last week, an oil and gas trade group filed an appeal with the Interior Department seeking to overturn the BLM’s decision not to offer these leases.  They were joined by a small oil and gas company that had hoped to buy some of these leases — so small, in fact, that they don’t operate a single well in Utah.

    The gist of their appeal is that because the BLM initially made the (wrong) decision to offer these leases, it was required to do so no matter what kind of information the agency learned about the threats that development would pose to fragile cultural sites, threatened species, etc.

    In other words, industry wants the good old days back of “lease first and think later.”  Not a chance.  SUWA and other conservation groups intend to intervene on behalf of the BLM and defend this important decision.


  • July 30th, 2013

    Here’s what is happening this month with the redrock:
    1. The Utah state legislature’s anti-federal government campaign hits a brick wall called the U.S. Constitution.
    2. Take action for wild Utah this summer!
    3. SUWA’s annual Backyard Bash celebrates our community of citizen activists.
    4. The BLM has a lot of bad ideas for Utah public lands.
    5. Our challenge to a Bush-era land use plan is finally heard in court.

    Read More »
  • June 27th, 2013

    Here’s what is happening this month with the redrock:
    1. Don’t let the BLM sacrifice Labyrinth Canyon for fertilizer!
    2. Support in the Senate for protecting Utah wilderness is on the rise.
    3. Educators tell Utah legislators they are chasing imaginary unicorns.
    4. Moab residents discuss the Greater Canyonlands National Monument proposal.
    5. Join us for SUWA’s annual Backyard Bash this July!

    Read More »
  • May 9th, 2013

    May 2013

    Here’s what is happening this month with the redrock:
    1.  Join Neil Young and Daryl Hannah in our Greater Canyonlands photo campaign.
    2.  Bad news for Hatch Point in Greater Canyonlands.
    3.  Help increase congressional support for Utah wilderness.
    4.  Attend an upcoming redrock event in NJ, NY and CT.

    Take a Protect Greater Canyonlands photo! Daryl Hannah and Neil Young did.

    Daryl Hannah and Neil Young

    Recently, actress/director Daryl Hannah and rock legend Neil Young were in Moab and showed their support for protecting Greater Canyonlands!

    Join them by taking a Protect Greater Canyonlands photo!  Click here to print out your own black and yellow sign and then upload your own photo:

    More ways to get involved this summer:

    Our Greater Canyonlands postcard campaign has been a great success!  Staff at the White House Council on Environmental Quality have noticed the thousands of signatures from redrock supporters throughout the country, and we will continue to deliver signed postcards to President Obama throughout the summer.

    Sign up to collect postcards in support of protecting Greater Canyonlands from your family, friends and beyond by clicking here.

    You can also visit to send an email to President Obama, tweet to the White House, ask your friends to like the Protect Greater Canyonlands Facebook page, and more.

    BLM green lights potash drilling on Hatch Point

    The Moab Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has approved a mining company’s proposal to drill four exploratory potash* wells on Hatch Point.  K2O Utah LLC, owned by a large Australian mining company, has little concern for the harmful effects its drilling and development activities have on the outstanding scenery of the Greater Canyonlands area; it is interested in making a profit.  Period.  Yet, the tens of thousands of visitors that flock to the Hatch Point and Needles Overlook area annually are not doing so to view drill rigs, sludge pits, tanker trucks and industrial equipment.

    Hatch potash
    Area of Hatch Point that would be affected by
    potash development.

    The BLM has acknowledged that its current management plan failed to correctly identify areas where oil, gas and potash development should occur.  As a result, the Moab BLM is currently conducting an evaluation of public lands near Moab (known as the Master Leasing Plan process) to correct this defect.  As part of the Master Leasing Plan, the BLM is considering new management constraints for various areas, such as closing the Hatch Point area to leasing.   The BLM’s draft Master Leasing Plan is scheduled for release later this summer.

    The BLM’s resolve to rush headlong into a decision to allow potash drilling on Hatch Point illustrates the immediate need for a higher level of protection for the lands in Greater Canyonlands.

    Read more on our blog by clicking here.

    Help grow congressional support for Utah wilderness!

    ARRWA Facebook graphic

    In April, redrock champions Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ) introduced America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act, legislation that would protect over 9 million acres of spectacular public lands in Utah.

    Currently, the redrock bill has 71 House and 12 Senate cosponsors — those members of Congress who have officially signed on in support of this visionary legislation.  Now, our task is to continue to grow this support during the coming months.  Contact from you — their constituents — is what really makes the difference.

    What you can do:

    1) Send an email to your members of Congress by clicking here.

    2) Sign our petition to Congress by clicking here.

    If your members of Congress have already cosponsored America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act (see list by clicking here), please thank them by clicking here.

    Attend a Utah wilderness event!

    Learn more about Utah wilderness, the Greater Canyonlands campaign, and how you can get involved.  In the coming weeks, presentations will be held in New Jersey, Connecticut and New York.

    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 ( in the Midwest and Jackie ( in the East.

    change.orgSign the petition to protect Greater Canyonlands

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