Published: Tue, December 05, 2017
World | By Melba Underwood

Trump expected to scale back national monuments during Utah visit

Trump expected to scale back national monuments during Utah visit

President Trump says he is going to shrink the size of the national monuments in Utah by millions of acres, potentially triggering a legal battle to decide the fate of America's wildernesses.

The Antiquities Act of 1906 gives the president authority to establish national monuments, largely to thwart looting of archaeological sites.

The President will speak at the state capitol at 12:30 P.M. That's where he's expected to announce massive reductions in the size of Bears Ears Monument and Grand Staircase Escalante. Prior to joining the U's political science department, Tim worked for former Salt Lake City Mayor Ted Wilson and former Utah Gov. Scott Matheson. The President's move was met with protests in Utah and in San Francisco by environmentalists and some Native Americans. Almost two dozen other National monuments are being reviewed for rollbacks.

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The decision to shrink the national monuments, which were designated by President Obama, is highly controversial and pits conservationists and recreational users of public lands against the oil and mining industries, as well as other commercial interests. Dan Smuts, the Senior Director of the Pacific Region Wilderness Society worries what happened in Utah could set a precedent.

There are now more than 125 designated national monuments, encompassing everything from a coral reef in the Caribbean to an African burial ground in New York State to a barrier island off the coast of Alaska.

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