STATEMENT on proposed Bears Ears National Monument management plan

Mar 11, 2024

Denver—The Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service released a series of potential management plans for Bears Ears National Monument on Friday, March 8.

The Bears Ears Commission, Forest Service, and BLM worked together to develop a draft resource management plan (Alternative E) that incorporates traditional Indigenous knowledge, while balancing public access and use of the monument with protecting its cultural and natural resources. Alternative E is the preferred plan of the Forest Service and BLM.

The Center for Western Priorities released the following statement from Communications Manager Kate Groetzinger:

“I’m happy to see the federal agencies involved in managing the monument are committed to prioritizing Tribal knowledge and wishes. When President Obama designated Bears Ears, he made it clear in his proclamation that he intended the monument to be managed in collaboration with the five Bears Ears Tribes. This is an exciting shift toward prioritizing Tribal knowledge in the management of our public lands.


“The Bears Ears landscape holds priceless cultural and natural resources that Tribal members still make use of today. The federal government has an obligation to protect Tribal resources on public lands. This plan will help do so, while allowing for compatible recreation and public access. The BLM and Forest Service should stand confidently behind this plan.”

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Photo credit: Tim Peterson