National Monument Designations
Our country’s public lands are near and dear to the hearts of the American people. Across the country, and political spectrum, it’s clear that there is a tremendous desire to preserve our parks, monuments and other public lands, and to protect additional wild areas and wildlife that remain at risk.
Under the Obama Administration, the Antiquities Act has been used to establish or expand 16 national monuments. Altogether, he has protected more than 260 million acres of public lands and waters – more than any other President – as well as preserved sites that help tell the story of significant people or extraordinary events in American history.
Support for permanently protecting America’s lands and waters as national parks and national monuments is at an all-time high. According to the Colorado College State of the Rockies Project Conservation in the West poll released in February, 96 percent of Westerners emphasize the importance of protecting public lands for future generations.
Our protected public lands are where veterans returning from war go for solitude and healing, where we teach our children and grandchildren to hunt, fish and disconnect from an increasingly digital world, and where future generations can learn about the proud history of our great nation.
There are still important places that should be protected. Only a small fraction of America’s national parks and monuments celebrate the achievements of African-Americans, Latinos, women, and other historically-underrepresented communities. As our nation continues to grow and diversify, it is important that we continue to enhance our system of public lands to better honor the collective stories that make up our shared heritage.
Because we have recently seen an ongoing onslaught of bills, amendments and overheated rhetoric that is threatening to make it more difficult to create new national parks and monuments and protect open space, this website focuses on the most recent designations over the past administration.