On Wednesday, President Trump signed an executive order opening the door for his administration to reduce or completely remove federally protected National Monuments around the nation– including New Mexico’s two newest monuments designed by President Obama.

While the order does not unilaterally make the removals or reductions occur immediately, it is designed to allow Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke to “review” monuments that have been designated by use of the Antiquities Act in the last 20 years – including New Mexico’s newest monuments, the Rio Grande del Norte near Taos and Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in Doña Ana County.

QUICK ACTION: Send Pres. Trump and Sec. Zinke your New Mexico National Monuments Story

For communities around New Mexico, undoing the Antiquities Act or reducing our National Monuments is a troubling development in the ongoing effort to protect important cultural sites in areas in and around  Rio Grande del Norte National Monument near Taos and Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in Doña Ana County.

Senator Martin Heinrich responded to Trump’s order in no uncertain terms.

ProgressNow New Mexico has been helping to keep you informed about public lands issues in the state since the beginning.

Read More: In 2014 President Obama protected a half million acres in the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument utilizing the Antiquities Act.

Read More: Sen Domenici returns to lobby Congress, Trump to transfer public lands to big oil through Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn

Read More: Pledge to stand with Sens. Udall, Heinrich against these Trump’s nominees

Wednesday’s order comes just one day after the Outdoor Industry Association released numbers showing that recreation in America’s National Monuments generates significant economic figures.

In fact, outdoor recreation generates $6.1 billion in spending in New Mexico each year, providing the state with more than $400 million in state and local tax revenue and employing 68,000 New Mexicans, according to the NM Wilderness Alliance.

Trump’s order directs his Secretary of the Interior, former Montana Congressman Ryan Zinke, to evaluate our newest national monuments.

Use ProgressNow’s civic engagement tools to tell Secretary Zinke how much New Mexico’s monuments mean to us.

 

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