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Audubon CA Thanks Secretary Haaland for Visit to Proposed Chuckwalla National Monument

Coalition urged the protection of region's biodiverse desert land for local communities and future generations

May 21, 2024

Eastern Coachella Valley, California – Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland visited the proposed Chuckwalla National Monument this past Saturday, meeting with federal, state, Tribal and local officials, and community members to learn about their vision for conserving the approximately 627,000 acres between Joshua Tree National Park and the Chocolate Mountains. 

Audubon California thanks the Secretary, and representatives from the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the National Park Service, for hearing directly from the community leaders who have been championing the effort for designation. The Protect CA Deserts coalition has been calling on President Biden to protect these vital lands by designating the Chuckwalla National Monument through the Antiquities Act. The proposal has also been introduced by Senator Alex Padilla, Senator Laphonza Butler, and Congressman Raul Ruiz in both chambers of U.S. Congress.

Following the Secretary's visit, the Department of the Interior may announce and host public community meetings for area residents to share testimonies about the benefits and impacts of public monument designation.

Thank you, Secretary Haaland, for coming to experience the beauty of these vital lands and for listening to the voices of our diverse coalition,” said Frank Ruiz, Director of Audubon California’s Desert and Salton Sea programs, who has been co-leading the campaign and joined Saturday’s roundtable with the Secretary. “A designated Chuckwalla National Monument will help preserve the region’s rich biodiversity, honor Tribal heritage, expand access to nature, and protect the places that people and birds need to thrive. We look forward to working with the Biden-Harris administration on this effort that will bring so many benefits to our local communities.” 

Learn more about the proposed Chuckwalla National Monument here.

Contact: Shineh Rhee,

Communications Director, Audubon California



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