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BLM, Forest Service to hear from the public on a proposed national monument near the Grand Canyon

 The Grand Canyon, seen from the national park's North Rim.
Murphy Woodhouse
The Grand Canyon, seen from the national park's North Rim.

The Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service are set to hold a meeting on a proposed national monument near the Grand Canyon.

Among other things, the proposed 1.1 million-acre Baaj Nwaavjo I’tah Kukveni Grand Canyon National Monument would make permanent a 20-year moratorium on mining already in place for the area.

The name is made of Havasupai and Hopi phrases meaning, respectively, “where our ancestors roamed” and “our footsteps,” said Stuart L.T. Chavez. He is a former tribal council member for the Havasupai, one of about a dozen tribes in a coalition pushing for the designation.

“It's not going to just be the Havasupai alone,” he said. “This is a protection for the environment for everyone to be conscientious about and understand that it's for their protection and the future generations’ protection.”

Chavez and others are especially concerned about uranium mining.

The proposal has faced some pushback, with a Mohave County supervisor recently saying it would have negative economic impacts.

The BLM and Forest Service are meeting in Flagstaff Tuesday afternoon, and several high-ranking officials – including BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning – will be on hand. It will take place from 1-4 p.m. at the DoubleTree on Route 66.

Those who are unable to attend can email comments on the proposal to OIEA@ios.doi.gov or mail them to the BLM’s Arizona State Office in Phoenix within a week of the meeting.

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Media, Nevada Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUNR in Nevada, KUNC in Colorado and KANW in New Mexico, with support from affiliate stations across the region. Funding for the Mountain West News Bureau is provided in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Copyright 2023 Boise State Public Radio News. To see more, visit Boise State Public Radio News.

Murphy Woodhouse
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