Groups Make Last-Minute Push To Save National Monument Areas
Conservation groups are airing TV ads, planning rallies and creating parody websites in a last-minute blitz to stop Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke from downsizing or eliminating national monument areas that cover large swaths of land and water from Maine to California.
The deadline for Zinke to announce his recommendations is Thursday following a four-month review of 27 sites ordered by President Donald Trump.
The outdoor recreation industry has hammered home its message that peeling back protections on areas where its customers hike, bike and camp could prevent future generations from enjoying the sites.
In addition, the Wilderness Society has created a parody website featuring Trump and Zinke selling luxury real estate at the sites.
Groups that want to see the areas reduced have been less vociferous, pleading their cases on social media and working behind the scenes to lobby federal officials.
They say past presidents have misused a century-old law to create monuments that are too large and stop development of energy and other resources.