Protections for Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments Upheld in Court

Brian Sybert
|August 14, 2023

On Friday, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit by the State of Utah challenging President Biden’s use of the Antiquities Act to reinstate the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments. The Conservation Lands Foundation has been defending these monuments in court for more than five years and today was a huge victory in our efforts to protect these important landscapes.

Both national monuments were established through the Antiquities Act – Grand Staircase-Escalante in 1996 by President Clinton and Bears Ears in 2016 by President Obama. In 2017, President Trump attempted to reduce the boundaries of Bears Ears by 85 percent and Grand Staircase-Escalante by nearly half, opening some lands removed from the monuments to mining and drilling. 

This is a big win for the Antiquities Act, for the sovereign Tribal Nations who hold deep connections to these lands, for all current and future national monuments, for the Conservation Lands Foundation and you, our supporters, who have been fighting tirelessly to establish and defend these and all National Conservation Lands. 

The decision upholds the Antiquities Act as a means of protecting our country’s great public lands and comes at a time when we need to protect these valuable and vulnerable places more than ever.  

Americans love their public lands. While we celebrate this win, we also know the State of Utah hopes to appeal this case all the way to the Supreme Court. We will keep fighting to protect the monuments’ value to Indigenous culture, world-renowned paleontological resources, outdoor recreation, biodiversity, and the region’s economic stability. 

Thank you for your continued support of our mission - it makes a difference.

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About Brian Sybert
Brian Sybert is the Executive Director of the Conservation Lands Foundation.
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2 reactions
  • MM
    Michael Maloney followed this page 2023-08-19 08:02:02 -0600
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    Brian Sybert published this page in Latest News 2023-08-17 15:04:50 -0600
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