Good news! President Biden just restored sweeping protections for irreplaceable land and marine wildlife habitat areas—more than 2 million acres of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments and nearly 5,000 square miles of ocean habitat in the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument—that had been decimated under the Trump administration.
Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears in Utah are home to iconic Western wildlife populations and thousands of archeological sites which were threatened by oil and gas development. Desert bighorn sheep, which are a crucial indicator species for the health of entire ecosystems, could have greatly suffered if oil and gas drilling or mineral mining moved into the formerly safeguarded national monument lands.
The Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument—a vital ocean wilderness 150 miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts—provides habitat for nearly one thousand marine species and seabirds. Octopus and Greenland sharks are just two species that will benefit from the restored protections for this deep-sea habitat.