President Donald Trump made a controversial decision on Monday, shrinking the size of two national monuments in Utah. Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments were collectively shrunk by more than 2 million acres.
Bear Ears will be drastically reduced from 1.35 million acres to just 228,784 acres. While Grand Staircase-Escalante will see its acreage nearly halved from 1.9 million acres to just over 1 million.
“You know how best to take care of your land,” the president said to an audience at the Utah State Capitol. “You know best how to conserve this land for generations.” He then called the designation of the national monuments an abuse of federal authority and the work of “distant bureaucrats.”