In early August 2023, President Biden protected nearly 1 million acres of federal public lands in Arizona by designating The Baaj Nwaavjo I’tah Kukveni – Ancestral Footprints of the Grand Canyon National Monument. The Grand Canyon is an iconic landscape and outdoor recreation destination. In 2021, 4.5 million visitors from around the world visited Grand Canyon National Park, participating in outdoor recreation activities and supporting businesses in nearby communities. Twelve tribes and several local grassroots conservation groups have been advocating for the designation of this monument to protect their sacred homelands from future harmful development.
The Grand Canyon region contains some of the most well-known sites and natural wonders in the world. Perhaps most well-known for Grand Canyon National Park, which was designated in 1919, the region has experienced a tumultuous relationship with local tribes, who lost access to their homelands with the park’s designation. The government made initial efforts to restore lands and establish cultural land use policies in 1975. The Grand Canyon Tribal Coalition, led by Havasupai Tribe, Hopi Tribe, Hualapai Tribe, Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians, Las Vegas Tribe of Paiutes, Moapa Band of Paiute Indians, Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, Shivwits Band of Paiutes, Navajo Nation, San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe, Yavapai-Apache Nation, Zuni Tribe, and Colorado River Indian Tribes, continued to work for greater protections in the region. Their leadership, along with the efforts of numerous conservation groups and advocates, led to the designation of Baaj Nwaavjo I’tah Kukveni – Ancestral Footprints of the Grand Canyon National Monument.
Since 2010, The Conservation Alliance and its member companies have contributed over $330,000 to The Grand Canyon Trust to protect the Colorado Plateau. Advocacy efforts included a sign-on-letter with 50 TCA member company signatures, thousands of petition signatures from customers, and local companies testifying at the Public Listening Session in Flagstaff in front of Department of Interior leadership.