WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 28, 2016) The BlueGreen Alliance today applauded the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters (UA) for its recent resolution to support designation of the Bears Ears region in southeastern Utah as a national monument. In addition, three UA local unions—Local Unions 140, 669, and 798—signed onto the resolution. The Bears Ears region covers 1.9 million acres of national public lands. Twenty-six tribes are advocating for President Obama to designate these lands as a national monument because Bears Ears is important for the livelihoods and cultural practices of many of these tribes.
“Bears Ears and the surrounding 1.9 million acres of public land hold a rich history of the Native American tribes whose livelihoods, identities, and cultural practices are connected to these beautiful and currently unprotected lands. Our union has many Native American members who call this land their spiritual home,” said William P. Hite, General President of the United Association. “We believe that these lands should receive permanent protection under the Antiquities Act of 1906, and are proud to support the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition in the preservation and protection of these ecologically and culturally significant lands.”
Boasting 18 wilderness study and inventoried road less areas and over 100,000 archeological sites, the Bears Ears region is threatened by looting, vandalism, and damage from off-road vehicles, which is causing permanent damage to cliff dwellings, burial grounds, and wildlife habitats, as well as the scenic beauty of the land.
“It is important that this land is protected and remains intact so that we can enjoy its rich history and ecological resources for generations to come,” said Kim Glas, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance. ”We strongly support ensuring the preservation and protection of Bears Ears, and urge the Obama administration to move quickly to protect these historically significant lands. We are incredibly proud of the UA for leading on this issue.”
The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States, Canada (UA), affiliated with the national building trades, represents approximately 340,000 plumbers, pipefitters, sprinkler fitters, service technicians and welders in local unions across North America. The UA provides the premier training programs available in the industry today, including five-year apprenticeship programs, extensive journeyman training, a comprehensive, five-year instructor training program, and numerous certification programs.