SUWA Statement on House Natural Resources Federal Lands Subcommittee Field Hearing in Hurricane, UT – 4.22.24

Apr 22nd, 2024 Written by suwa

April 22, 2024

SUWA Statement on House Natural Resources Federal Lands Subcommittee Field Hearing in Hurricane, UT – 4.22.24


Travis Hammill, DC Director, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA);
Kya Marienfeld, Wildlands Attorney, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA); (435) 259-5440;
Grant Stevens, Communications Director, Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA); (319) 427-0260;

Hurricane, UT – Today, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands held a Field Hearing in Hurricane, UT. A variety of topics were covered, including the proposed Northern Corridor Highway through the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area (NCA) and the recently finalized Public Lands Rule. Below is a statement from Travis Hammill, SUWA’s DC Director. 

“Today’s partisan hearing was out of touch with local and national support for protecting public lands – especially the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area. Despite a hearing title that included the phrase “Empowering Local Voices,” no members of the public were allowed to speak. Local community members sporting “No Highway thru Red Cliffs” stickers made up a majority of the audience and the message was clear,” said Travis Hammill, DC Director for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA). 

“SUWA was disappointed with today’s attacks on the Public Lands Rule – the Rule highlights what was always there: that conservation is an integral part of how BLM tackles its work, day-in and day-out. Keeping conservation front and center is particularly important in places like Washington County and across Southwest Utah that are seeing both significant growth and the impacts of climate change such as prolonged drought and diminishing water supplies.”

SUWA submitted testimony laying out the history of the Red Cliffs NCA and correcting misinformation presented in today’s one-sided and often baseless testimony. It will be part of the Congressional Record. 

Additional Information:

The Northern Corridor Highway

The proposed highway violates at least five federal environmental protection laws (the Omnibus Public Lands Management Act, the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, the Administrative Procedure Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act). Violations of these laws were central to the litigation filed by conservation groups, which has led the BLM to reconsider its decision to approve a highway right-of-way in the NCA. This process is underway right now. 

The Public Lands Rule 

On Thursday, April 18, 2024, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced the release of the final Public Lands Rule, which establishes a “… framework to ensure healthy landscapes, abundant wildlife habitat, clean water, and balanced decision-making on our nation’s public lands.” SUWA issued a statement in strong support of the Rule, which will go into effect 30 days following publication in the Federal Register. 


The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA) is a nonprofit organization with members and supporters from around the country dedicated to protecting America’s redrock wilderness. From offices in Moab, Salt Lake City, and Washington, DC, our team of professionals defends the redrock, organizes support for America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act, and stewards this world-renowned landscape. Learn more at