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Originally Posted: 26 January 2009
Giant Weed Wackers Have No Place in National Monuments
A proposed federal plan could irreparably alter the Grand Staircase-Escalante. The plan calls for relaxed restrictions on "chaining," the practice of dragging a chain between two bulldozers to scrape off trees and shrubs; and new motorized use on up to 1,000 miles of routes within fragile areas.
With its treasure trove of archeological sites, windswept slickrock and twisting red rock canyons, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in south-central Utah is an awe-inspiring place. Little wonder, then, that it was the first national monument set aside as part of the National Landscape Conservation System, specifically to protect the area in its natural state.
But a proposed federal plan for this area could irreparably alter the Grand Staircase-Escalante. The plan calls for relaxed restrictions on "chaining," the practice of dragging a chain between two bulldozers to scrape off trees and shrubs; and new motorized use on up to 1,000 miles of routes within fragile areas.
You can help. Since this proposal is still in draft form, there is a good chance that it will be finalized under the Obama administration.
The BLM needs to hear that the Grand Staircase must be protected as a spectacular natural area that will be cherished by many generations of Americans.
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