Tucson, Ariz. (October 1. 2018)—Following a brisk planning process that included a number of public meetings, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is now in the process of considering the hundreds of public comments on the draft Resource Management Plan for the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area.
The Archaeology Southwest comments emphasize the need for the BLM to manage the beautiful-yet-fragile riparian area in strict compliance with the U.S. Congress’ original and continuing goal for establishing the SPRNCA in 1990: “to protect the riparian area and the aquatic, wildlife, archaeological, paleontological, scientific, cultural, educational, and recreational resources of the public lands surrounding the San Pedro River.”
John Welch, director of Archaeology Southwest’s Landscape and Site Preservation Program, said, “BLM has everything it needs to protect this unique and spectacular stretch of the U.S. Southwest’s only completely free-flowing river: a legislative mandate, good local staff, public support, solid scientific direction for conservation, great partnerships, and foundations for tribal consultations. Let’s hope the political appointees in DC don’t squander this opportunity and invite additional litigation by trying to expand livestock grazing and vehicle access in a place set aside specifically for resource protection.”
Full text of our comments (opens as a PDF) here