EnviroNews: Trump a menace to national parks

By Amy Brunvand
Mesa Arch in Canyonlands National Park, by Paxson Woelber

The National Parks and Conservation Association names three Utah National Parks and Monuments among those most threatened by Trump administration fast-track drilling policies – Hovenweep National Monument, Dinosaur National Monument and Canyonlands National Park.

The report says that “the administration is now offering nearly any parcel that industry nominates for an oil and gas lease, many at only $2 an acre.”

At Hovenweep, only 2% of leased public lands have been surveyed for cultural resources and the report warns, “the area could be industrialized before we even know what we stand to lose.”

Near Canyonlands, there was no public review prior to oil and gas leasing. Near Dinosaur, industrialization has already led to air pollution that violates federal standards.

Oil and gas industrialization is incompatible with the tourism and recreation economy that has been built around national parks and monuments. As the report says,  “National parks are more than iconic landscapes; parks tell the stories of our shared history and cultural heritage.”

Spoiled Parks (NPCA, 2019): npca.org/reports/oil-and-gas-report 


This is an excerpt from our November EnviroNews column. View the full article here.

This article was originally published on November 6, 2019.