The public comment period for 25 National Monuments designated under the Antiquities Act of 1906 ends today! You can add your comment by following this link.
Note that pursuant to the provisions of the Antiquities Act, these sites were designated due to their scientific or historic relevance, not their importance in terms of outdoor recreation, so comments that include mention of those aspects are especially important. Comments regarding specific sites are also important, as the stated intention of having this public comment is presumably part of the investigation as to whether monuments were made with “adequate public outreach and coordination with relevant stakeholders.”
I believe that as far as public lands are concerned, We the People are all “relevant stakeholders,” so it’s important to communicate our thoughts to the Department of the Interior.
Below is my submission; I hope you will add your voice to the more than 1.2 million other comments that have been submitted so far!
Dear Secretary Zinke:
I am writing in support of maintaining the current boundaries and protections of all of the National Monuments being reviewed pursuant to Executive Order 13792, especially:
Canyons of the Ancients, which I visited in May 2017, for its cultural and historical relevance due to the presence of over 6,000 recorded ruins on site with possibly thousands more that have not yet been discovered;
Cascade-Siskiyou, which I walked through in 2015 while thru-hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, for its scientific relevance due to the immense diversity of geology, ecology, and flora and fauna present on site;
Rio Grande del Norte, which I visited in June 2017, for its scientific relevance due to its unique geological features and presence of a designated Wild and Scenic River, and historic and cultural relevance due to the presence of numerous petroglyph and archaeological sites;
Sand to Snow, which I have visited on numerous occasions, for its scientific relevance in that this monument contains within only 154,000 acres (100,000+ of which were already federally-designated wilderness) virtually every life zone from Lower Sonoran to Arctic Alpine, and its historic relevance due to the presence of numerous pre-historic sites, petroglyphs, and archaeological sites;
San Gabriel Mountains, which I have visited on numerous occasions, for its scientific relevance in that this monument hosts a diversity of flora and fauna that are endemic to the unique location and climate of the San Gabriels and its historic relevance due to the presence of more than 600 archaeological sites. This site is also particularly important as the San Gabriel Mountains offer virtually the only wide open public space for millions of southern Californians, and thus the additional funding and resources afforded a monument are crucial in its maintenance and care.
The Antiquities Act of 1906 allows the President of the United States to designate a National Monument if the site is of historic or scientific interest. Each of these sites above, as well as those not mentioned in this comment, have met this requirement, and thus should remain as designated.