Defending our California desert national monuments

Community turns out in Indio in support of three area national monuments under review by the Administration.

Participants at the Indio event show their support for California's desert national monuments. Photo: Frank Ruiz

Representatives of the local community and conservation groups turned out in force last week in Indio to show their support for three California desert national monuments currently under review by the Trump Administration. Audubon California was one of the sponsors of the event.

President Trump in April directed the Department of Interior to review any national monument created since Jan. 1, 1996, that spans at least 100,000 acres in response to what he considers recent abuses of the 1906 Antiquities Act. The Act authorizes the president to declare federal lands of historic or scientific value to be national monuments.

Audubon California also hosted a similar event to rally people to save the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument at the Audubon Center at Debs Park. We also participated in direct action to support the Giant Sequoia National Monument.

About 70 people attended the Eastern Coachella Valley Monuments Rally. Representatives of Audubon California were joined by people from the National Parks Conservation Association, Mohave Desert Land Trust, Sierra Club, Council of Mexican Federations in North America, Building Healthy Communities. Many members of the community also attended, as well as a representative from Congressman Raul Ruiz from 36th District, who spoke to attendees about the importance of sharing with other people why it is important to protect our public lands.  People signed cards and laid the groundwork for trips to visit the monuments at the desert. Lastly, they encouraged attendees to spread the word about the importance of submitting comments in support of the national monuments.

Participants cheering for action to protect California national monuments. Photo: Frank Ruiz
Audubon California's Frank Ruiz speaks at the desert national monuments event.

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