Advocates Urge Antiquities Act Use to Expand San Gabriel Mountains National Monument

Photo credit: Bob Wick, Hoyt Mountain

Photo credit: Bob Wick, Hoyt Mountain

 

Advocates Urge Antiquities Act Use to Expand San Gabriel Mountains National Monument

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Environmental advocates are rallying for the expansion of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument by adding 109,000 acres through the use of the Antiquities Act. These lands, serving as the gateway to the Angeles National Forest, attract millions of visitors annually and play a vital role in the well-being of over 18 million people residing within a 90-mile radius.

Background:

In 2014, President Barack Obama took a crucial step in preserving the San Gabriel Mountains by designating approximately 346,177 acres as a national monument. However, a portion of the western Angeles National Forest, integral to the region’s ecological health and not covered by the original designation, is now the focus of renewed efforts for protection.

Community Impact:

The San Gabriel Mountains are a backyard for diverse and urban communities surrounding Los Angeles. Expanding the national monument aligns with the mission to provide equitable access to nature and sustainable recreation opportunities to improve public health, conserve a critical drinking water source, protect cultural heritage and address climate and biodiversity challenges.

Mission Focus:

Advocates are committed to federal legislation and policies that protect the San Gabriel Mountains and foothills, improve visitor reception and multi-cultural stewardship, and protect rivers within the forest and along urban river corridors. Our Goals include:

  • Legislation and Policy Advocacy: Work towards passage and Administration approval of the San Gabriel Mountains Foothills Rivers Protection Act.
  • Education and Outreach: Engage with community members, public schools, civic leaders, elected officials, and businesses to build support for the monument expansion.
  • Management Plan Implementation: Advance efforts to implement the Management Plan with a focus on sustainable access and visitor services.
  • Funding Initiatives: Seek funding for sustainable recreational infrastructure and improved multi-cultural visitor reception, conservation of precious water and air resources, forest health, climate resilience, and habitat protection.
  • Community Engagement: Continue engaging public schools and the community at large on the protection of public lands for current and future generations.

Historical Context:

The original designation of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument in 2014 was a result of persistent efforts. The U.S. Forest Service relied on input to develop the Monument Plan, ensuring it serves the diverse population of Los Angeles.

Future Initiatives:

Sustained support for various improvements, such as the East Fork River Project and efforts to elevate trail safety at Mount Baldy, exemplifies dedication to the region’s well-being. Amigos de los Rios is spearheading the design and implementation of a consistent, culturally accessible signage system throughout the forest. This joint initiative is designed to enhance visitor reception and ensure that individuals from all backgrounds can fully enjoy and connect with the natural splendor of the San Gabriel Mountains.

 

“Amigos de los Rios has consistently advocated for the expansion of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument and the implementation of the ‘Mountains to Sea’ Emerald Necklace Greenway network to serve East County Los Angeles for the past 20 years.

The diverse communities of the Los Angeles Metropolitan area would not be here without the ecosystem services provided by the San Gabriel Mountains to our residents.

Our public health, as urban communities, literally depends on the continued health of the forest. The expansion of the monument will help articulate connections between urban residents and the national forest. We need to ensure our region is sustainable for current and future generations and make greater efforts to connect public school students as stewards to the Angeles National Forest.

The proposed San Gabriel Monument expansion aligns with our non-profit’s mission to ensure equitable access to nature, improve multicultural visitor reception, and provide sustainable recreation infrastructure experiences in the forest and along the urban river corridors.”

Claire Robinson, Amigos de los Rios Managing Director, who attended the meeting.

 

Sign the petition:

Take action to support the expansion of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *