Joshua Tree National Park: Eagle Mountain Follow Up
Public Lands for the People, First Class Miners, and Minerals and Mining Advisory Council took the lead at the August 5th meeting in Joshua Tree with over 100 miners and pro-multiple land use advocates in attendance. The Environmental Lobby crowd was outnumbered by at least 2:1. We know it was impossible for most of you to attend this meeting because of your location. To those who did attend, thank you very much. We were very satisfied with the turnout numbers, and now we will ask all of you to involve yourself and your friends by submitting public comments to stop the Obama Administration from taking more land out of the public domain. The comment process is easy and will be detailed near the end of this message.
The National Park Service (NPS) is conducting a boundary study to determine if it is feasible or appropriate (to use their words) to add lands in the Eagle Mountain area to the Joshua Tree National Park (JTNP). There were several public meetings held this past week in Desert Center, Palm Desert and Joshua Tree. You can read all of the NPS info here: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=59291
It is important to become an active participant in this process (unless you don’t mind just observing historic mining areas from park roads and reading about the area on expensive signs placed there by the NPS. If you like to really “get out there” and participate in prospecting, mining, primitive camping or hunting, it won’t be happening there once it gets designated National Park land. We realize most of you will never visit this area, but what must be accepted is any public land under threat requires a response from us all.
The NPS claims that there is pristine dark sky, desert tortoises and a healthy herd of bighorn sheep in the area. They claim the difficult access and low visitation rate by humans has helped that situation, but at the same time they are suggesting they will be making access easier with new roads, campgrounds, and streetlights when the area becomes part of JTNP! They don’t have enough funding to take care of the land they manage now. They even stated at the meeting if this land is annexed, they will have to shift funds around to try to take care of this new park area.
This area also holds rare earth and other rich mineral deposits. These will be lost to use for the national defense if we close this area to mineral extraction by turning it into a national park. We will be left to get our raw materials from foreign countries, who may not decide to sell to us anymore.
The deadline for comments to be accepted is August 21, 2015. That is less than 2 weeks. Here is how to submit your comments:
Navigate to: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/document.cfm?parkID=310&projectID=59291&documentID=67568. Please review the proposed options here, then:
Navigate to: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/document.cfm?parkID=310&projectID=59291&documentID=67175
- Click the Comment Now button.
- Insert your contact information and your comments on the boxes.
- MAKE SURE TO INPUT THE NO ACTION OPTION.
- Click Submit.
Our goal is to have 500 comments sent before the August 21, 2015 deadline. That is just a fraction of the number of folks receiving this message. We can do this.
Thank you very much,
President, Public Lands for the People