President Donald Trump visited Salt Lake City on Monday to sign an executive order that shrunk the size of two national monuments in Utah.
The order was in regards to Bears Ears national monument, created by former President Barack Obama, and the Grand Staircase – Escalante national monument, created by former President Bill Clinton.
As a result of the order, Bears Ears is set to be split into two divisions: the Indian Creek unit and the Shash Jaa unit, and reduced in size. Bears Ears originally contained 1.35 million acres and is now reduced to 228,784 acres.
The second national monument affected by the order, Grand Staircase, will also be reduced in size and split into three units: Kaiparowits, Grand Staircase and Escalante Canyons. Grand Staircase is set to be reduced from 1.9 million acres to 1 million split between the three new units.
The land previously classified as national monument land is set to be returned to public land under the authority of the Bureau of Land Management and private individuals.
“You know how to take care of your land,” President Trump said after signing the order.
Several nature conservation groups have filed a lawsuit against President Trump in federal court, claiming he lacked the authority to shrink the monuments under the 1906 Antiquities Act.
The executive order, titled “Review of Designations Under the Antiquities Act,” can be found at www.whitehouse.gov.
** Correction, in an earlier publishing SUU News had an image of the National Park Services. This has been changed to an image of the Grand Staircase and Escalante Canyons. **