Greater Canyonlands is a 1.8 million acre area surrounding Canyonlands National Park and is a perfect candidate for national monument protection. It is the heart of one of the West’s most critical watersheds. The Green, Dirty Devil, and San Rafael Rivers flow south through Greater Canyonlands to join up with the Colorado, the river upon which 40 million Americans and 15% of our nation’s crops rely.
The idea of protecting Greater Canyonlands has endured for nearly 80 years, but protecting it has never been more urgent. Increasing pressures from constant off-road vehicle abuse, oil and gas development, potash and uranium mining, and tar sands development threaten the archeological, biological, and recreational values of this unique region, and the Colorado River watershed. Organizations like the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance are petitioning the president to designate the Greater Canyonlands as a national monument under the authority of the Antiquities Act, protecting it as a national place of historic and scientific importance.
Protecting large landscapes is critical to mitigating the effects of climate change. Greater Canyonlands is also a key migration corridor for birds, mountain lions, pronghorn antelope and desert bighorn sheep.
Outdoor enthusiasts come to hike, climb, mountain bike and camp among the red-rocks and canyons. Most people who visit Moab are familiar with Canyonlands and Arches, but many do not realize that the geological formation that makes this place unique, extends beyond the park, covering over 1.4 million acres. This land is managed by the BLM and USFS and contains more than just scenic getaways for tourists but also 12,000 year old archeological sites and a rich history of Native American culture.
In Fall of 2015, Senator Bennet (CO) cosponsored "America's Red Rock Wilderness Act", protecting 9.2 million acres including parts of the Greater Canyonlands. Click here to join Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance in thanking Senator Bennet for his support of Utah's wild places.
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