U.S. Interior Secretary Deb Haaland will kicked off a two-day visit to Utah on Thursday where she will meet with tribes and political officials to discuss the potential restoration of two national monuments that were slashed in size by former President Donald Trump in order to open them to mining and drilling.
The visit is the centerpiece of Haaland’s first multi-state tour since being confirmed last month as the first Native American cabinet member, and will hold symbolic power given the importance of the monuments to Southwestern tribes.
Trump, a Republican, had cut the size of the two formerly massive monuments by 2 million acres (8,000 square kilometers) combined at the request of Utah’s Republican lawmakers, removing protections that had hindered ranching, drilling, mining, and other development in an area twice the size of the state of Rhode Island.
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Interior Secretary Deb Haaland today will kick off a 2-day visit to Utah, where she will meet with tribes and officials to discuss the potential restoration of 2 national monuments slashed in size by former President Trump. https://t.co/8WEG37i3Vy
— Jonathan Landay (@JonathanLanday) April 8, 2021