"The Chuckwalla National Monument and Joshua Tree National Park expansion, as envisioned, are poised to become the largest protected area of the Colorado Desert bioregion." —Luke Basulto, California Desert Program Manager with the National Parks Conservation Association
Coachella, CA - Today, Representative Raul Ruiz, M.D. (CA-25) is calling on President Biden to designate Chuckwalla National Monument and expand Joshua Tree National Park. The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) joins the Protect California Deserts Coalition and partners working to Protect ChuckWalla National Monument in this historic opportunity to conserve public lands in the California Desert.
Statement from Luke Basulto, California Desert Program Manager with the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA):
“This movement represents a monumental leap forward in preserving the California Desert. Imagine a protected, interconnected landscape stretching from the Coachella Valley, along the southern boundary of Joshua Tree National Park, to the Colorado River. This region holds a remarkable collection of opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts from all walks of life; it is a haven for biodiversity, and a culturally rich and climate-resilient landscape that should be preserved for generations to experience, enjoy, and connect with.”
“The Chuckwalla National Monument and Joshua Tree National Park expansion, as envisioned, are poised to become the largest protected area of the Colorado Desert bioregion. They’ll play a crucial role in safeguarding the migration routes of iconic wildlife like the desert bighorn sheep and the delicate habitats of the Mojave desert tortoise. These areas will also provide invaluable, protected habitat that could make the reintroduction of the Sonoran Pronghorn possible in California’s deserts.”
“The Chuckwalla National Monument, home to beloved outdoor areas like Painted Canyon and the historic Bradshaw Trail, would create more equitable access to the beauty of the California Desert landscape from nearby urban environments. For the residents of neighboring communities, heat, pollution, and environmental risks are harsh everyday realities. These new protections will provide local residents with much-needed respite and support local economies.”
“We commend the dedication of the local grassroots voices and the visionary leadership of U.S. Representative Raul Ruiz, M.D., in championing this cause. It’s time to make Chuckwalla National Monument a reality and expand Joshua Tree National Park— these efforts are a testament to our shared love for the California Desert.”
About the National Parks Conservation Association: Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than 1.6 million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s most iconic and inspirational places for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.
About the Protect CA Deserts Coalition: Protect CA Deserts is a coalition of local, regional, and national organizations that are working together on this historic opportunity to designate the Chuckwalla National Monument and expand Joshua Tree National Park. This will help ensure access to nature for local residents and visitors, protect unique biodiversity, safeguard the desert’s rich history, and honor the cultural landscape of the Iviatim, Nüwü, Pipa Aha Macav, Kwatsáan and Maara’yam peoples (Cahuilla, Chemehuevi, Mojave, Quechan, and Serrano nations). For more information, please visit www.protectchuckwalla.org.
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