On the eve of National Public Lands day, tune in to watch the live premiere of Public Trust, a feature-length documentary about America’s public lands and the fight to protect them…
In times of horrific polarization, we Americans all still share something in common: 640 million acres of public land. Held in trust by the federal government, these places are a natural stronghold against climate change, sacred to Indigenous people, and home to much of our remaining wildlife. However, despite support from voters across the political spectrum, they face unprecedented threats from extractive industries and the politicians in their pockets.
Premiering tonight—which happens to be the evening before National Public Lands Day—Public Trust investigates how we arrived at this precarious moment through three heated conficts: a national monument in the Utah desert, a proposed mine in the Boundary Waters, and oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and makes a case for their continued protection. Tune in at 5:00 PM PST (8:00 PM EDT) and watch it here. Also, scroll down for a photo gallery with captions from the film’s producers.
Bears Ears national monument located in southeastern Utah was first established as a monument by President Barack Obama in 2016, to be managed in conjunction with a coalition of five local tribes—all of which have ancestral ties to the region. President Trump reduced the monument by 85 percent. The areas of the monument that lost protection are now open for uranium mining leases and oil and gas exploration. Right photo: Once shot at by ranchers and then defaced by graffiti in 2016, the ancient Wolfman Panel—a detailed piece of petroglyph rock art—is further threatened by reduced protections for the Monument.
The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is a one-million-acre protected wilderness area in northern Minnesota, visited by nearly 200,000 people every year. The area is threatened by a proposed sulfide-ore copper mine that, if approved, could damage the watershed.
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is a 19-million-acre area in northeastern Alaska. It’s home to the Porcupine caribou herd. It is also under threat from possible oil and gas interests, proponents of which are working to push through legislation to open the Refuge to drilling. Right: some of the Porqupine caribou herd crossing the Hulahula River.
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