Craters of the Moon National Monument Deserves Continued Protection

The President signed an executive order attempting to eliminate or shrink 27 parks and monuments that have been protected by recent presidents.

On April 26, the President signed an executive order attempting to eliminate or shrink 27 parks and monuments that have been protected by presidents in recent decades. This list of 27 includes Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve in Idaho. Now is the time to speak out against this short-sighted executive order.

Craters of the Moon is a vast and incredible landscape of three lava fields, tree molds and lava tubes that lie along the Great Rift of Idaho. These are some of the world’s best examples of open rift cracks, including the deepest known rift crack on earth. President Calvin Coolidge first established the monument in 1924 using the authority of the Antiquities Act. Craters was later expanded in 2000 to better protect the region’s lava fields, cinder cones and sagebrush. In 2002, Congress redesignated the expanded National Park Service area as a national preserve to allow hunting to continue in this area.

Since 1906, sixteen presidents from both sides of the aisle have designated national monuments using the Antiquities Act to protect places like the Grand Canyon and Teton National Parks. The act also helps tell a more complete story of our nation, preserving sites that honor the full diversity of our history—from Stonewall to Birmingham to Cesar Chavez. The American public overwhelming supports our national monuments, and no president has ever attempted to revoke a predecessor’s monument designation … until now.

This executive order is an attack on our shared American history and heritage; it threatens to undermine our most treasured landscapes, including Craters of the Moon. The executive order puts the fate of our parks and monuments in the hands of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. Over the next few weeks, the Department of the Interior is taking public comments about this order. Now is the time to show Secretary Zinke that Idahoans and all Americans want our lands and waters to remain protected. With your help, we can demonstrate the overwhelming public support for keeping Craters of the Moon intact as well as preserving all our nation’s unique monuments.

Before July 10, tell Secretary Zinke and the Department of the Interior that Americans want all national monuments to be protected for future generations. Take action now! Below is a form letter to Secretary Zinke. We encourage you to personalize this letter, putting comments in your own words and adding why these areas are important to you. Personalized letters have more weight with the Department of Interior.