Oct 8, 2021
Colorado - President Joe Biden’s administration has announced that it will restore full protections to three national monuments that were slashed in size by former president Donald Trump. This includes Bears Ears in the Four Corners area of the Southwest, Grand Staircase-Escalante in Utah, and the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts, the only national monument off the Atlantic coast.
Today marks but one in a deeply important series of steps the Biden Administration has taken to restore protections to some of America’s most cherished lands and waters, many of which are sacred to Tribal Nations. GreenLatinos commend these actions, will continue to push for further inclusion of additional sites, and continue working to protect critical environmental resources future generations demand.
In response to this critically important moment, Mark Magaña, Founding President & CEO of GreenLatinos, released the following statement:
“We at GreenLatinos are thrilled to see that the President has restored protection of these three national monuments. We must and will continue to fight for our land, water, ocean, and wildlife, critical to slowing and solving the climate crisis, protecting public health, promoting wildlife and biodiversity, and rebuilding our national economy.
Latinos have long had a culture of conservationism and today we celebrate this victory together. In this pandemic moment, preserving our outdoors, which have become a refuge for so many, is more important than ever. This is also an important first step to honor the deep ancestral connections that Tribes have to these important landscapes.
Our world is at a tipping point amidst a worsening climate crisis and the United States must lead in the fight for environmental liberation for all.”
Ángel Peña, Public Lands Advocate with GreenLatinos, said:
“We at GreenLatinos are particularly excited for what today’s announcement means for our tribal and Indigenous partners. Now that Bears Ears is restored and expanded, we hope this offers a model for us to pursue other opportunities to expand the number of national monuments that incorporate tribal co-management and traditional knowledge, are designated in consultation with Tribes, and are in support of other deliberately and historically excluded communities.”
Mariana Del Valle Prieto Cervantes, Water Equity and Ocean Program Manager with GreenLatinos, said:
“These are rare moments of victory that many looked forward to when Secretary Deb Haaland took office within the Department of the Interior. Her leadership around the protection and preservation of both land and ocean has reinforced that the Biden Administration has the chance to be a driver of hope for Indigenous, Latino/a/x, rural, and many more communities who rely on ocean and public lands access for refuge in a time when refuges are increasingly important. The ocean is one of our strongest solutions in our fight against climate change. Protecting the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts is a step towards ocean climate action. This monument creates an opportunity for endangered and highly vulnerable ocean wildlife to thrive while improving the ocean’s health, benefitting all of our communities.”
The Biden Administration is taking action to protect our environment and has:
Halted leasing in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge;
Committed to restore protections for the Tongass National Forest under the Roadless Rule;
Initiated the process to protect Bristol Bay and the world-class salmon fishery it supports.
The Great Lakes, the Chesapeake Bay, the Everglades, the Columbia River Basin, and dozens of other special places are also back on America’s conservation agenda.
GreenLatinos is an active comunidad of Latino/a/x leaders, emboldened by the power and wisdom of our culture, united to demand equity and dismantle racism, resourced to win our environmental, conservation, and climate justice battles, and driven to secure our political, economic, cultural, and environmental liberation.