The Secretary of the Interior says he is asking the president to reduce the boundaries of a handful of recently created monuments, likely to set up a pitched legal battle.
Multiple spokesperson and experts available for interviews and commentary
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says he will recommend that none of the 27 national monuments under review be eliminated. But he told the Associated Press in Billings, Montana, that he will propose boundary readjustments to a “handful” of monuments.
The action will almost immediately trigger a legal challenge and political fight in Congress, where conservationists have been alarmed over the sweeping nature of Trump’s review and feared it would lead to substantial reductions in the size of large monuments in the West that were created to protect tribal artifacts, wildlife, and spectacular vistas.
Zinke already announced earlier in the summer that Bears Ears, the 3.5-million-acre landscape in southern Utah’s red-rock country, should be downsized, though he has not yet offered details as to how the boundaries should be redrawn.
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Available for interviews and commentary:
Laura Parker, Nat Geo writer specializing in climate change
Brian Howard, Nat Geo writer specializing in the environment, science and technology
Michael Greshko, Nat Geo writer specializing in science and the environment
Craig Welch, Nat Geo writer specializing in the environment and natural resources
Ford Cochran, specializing in geology and environmental science