Protect the Future of Bears Ears: Comments Due October 31st!

Oct 27th, 2022 Written by Judi Brawer

With Bears Ears National Monument now restored to its original boundaries, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is accepting preliminary input (known as “scoping comments”) on how to manage the monument.

This is a historic opportunity to ensure that the monument is managed for its unique and extraordinary values, and in collaboration with the Five Tribes of the Bears Ears Commission. As you know, Bears Ears is the first national monument designated at the request of Native American tribes, and incorporating traditional knowledge and Indigenous perspectives into how the monument is managed will be a new test for the BLM.

This is your chance to tell the BLM what issues are important to consider as it develops a draft management plan.

Click here to tell the BLM to prioritize conservation and tribal perspectives in the management of Bears Ears National Monument.

Autumn sunset at Bears Ears Buttes. Photo © Tim Peterson

It’s important that the BLM hear from people like you who care about Utah’s wild lands. While preparing the new management plan for Bears Ears National Monument, tell the BLM that it should:

  • Establish a proactive process for the Tribes to collaboratively manage Bears Ears with federal land managers, including incorporating Indigenous knowledge and Native ways of knowing in the management plan.
  • Manage lands with wilderness characteristics for the protection of wilderness values to ensure lasting conservation of the objects and values identified in the proclamation.
  • Close motorized routes that are harming monument objects and values. Widespread off-road vehicle use should not be allowed, and no additional routes should be designated.
  • Utilize a zoning management approach to recreation and visitation, focusing any development and expansion of trails and facilities in the frontcountry, while protecting sensitive backcountry areas.
  • Prohibit mechanical treatments (i.e., removal) of sagebrush, piñon pine, juniper, and other vegetation, and use only native species for restoration and post-fire seeding.
  • Protect and improve the viewsheds, natural and quiet soundscapes, dark skies, and visual and aesthetic settings of the monument.
  • Significantly reduce or eliminate livestock use where livestock grazing is harming monument objects and values.

(Click here for an expanded list of suggested talking points.)

Personalized comments carry the greatest weight, so we encourage you to take a moment to tell the BLM what is important to you.

Take action today to protect Bears Ears for generations to come.

Comments are due by October 31st. Thank you for everything you do to protect the redrock.

Thank you!

P.S. Comments that draw from first-hand knowledge and experience are the most effective. If you have a personal affinity for Bears Ears and know the area well, you may want to submit your comments directly through the BLM comment portal (follow the green “Participate Now” buttons).