Show your support for a Castner Range National Monument – take action now
After nearly two decades of continual effort to protect the Castner Range over the past 8 years conservation advocates in El Paso have focused their energies on helping to designate the Castner Range in Northeast El Paso as a National Monument.
As part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to protect, conserve, and restore our country’s iconic outdoor spaces and historical sites for the benefit of future generations, over the past year efforts to convince President Biden to sign a proclamation establishing the Castner Range National Monument have intensified dramatically.
Last year, President Biden used his authority under the Antiquities Act to restore protections for three national monuments that the previous administration attempted to reduce or eliminated.
In a Press Release earlier this year Congresswoman Escobar said “Castner Range is the crown jewel of West Texas and a source of great pride for El Pasoans. As our nation takes unprecedented action to conserve public lands and water and address climate change, I am proud to re-introduce the Castner Range National Monument Act and very grateful for the grassroots community leadership that has been working tirelessly on this issue. Together, we can meet the moment by increasing equitable access to outdoor spaces and ensuring El Paso families can continue to make memories surrounded by the mesmerizing beauty and history of Castner Range.”
Using the Antiquities Act last month President Biden pledged to make hundreds of thousands of acres off limits to development in southern Nevada around Spirit Mountain, a sacred tribal site.
The President is building on a series of steps the Administration has taken to protect some of America’s most cherished lands and waters. Will the Castner Range in El Paso be next?
“Establishing Castner Range as a National Monument is the right thing to do for the land and community in El Paso,” said Brian Sybert, Executive Director of the Conservation Lands Foundation. “We thank Congresswoman Escobar for her leadership and for collaborating with our community-based partner Frontera Land Alliance as she reintroduces this legislation and advances the effort to move it through Congress. This effort shows that local communities who are passionate about conserving their public lands can have a voice and make a difference in the future of the lands they love and care for and we are excited to work to make Castner Range America’s next national monument.”
“The El Paso Community Foundation and its partners applaud Representative Escobar for her actions today,” said Eric Pearson, President and CEO of the El Paso Community Foundation. “Castner Range is more than open space and quality of life – it is a large part of our identity, and it is a unique connection to our history and pre-history– and it is important to preserve.”
“A Castner Range National Monument recognizes a 21st Century conservation effort centered around justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion,” said Janae’ Reneaud Field, Executive Director for the Frontera Land Alliance. “Congresswoman Escobar’s introduction is another important step in our efforts to show our nation’s capital that the borderland region will do everything in its power to help this land become designated and therefor preserved.”
Mexican poppies in bloom on the Castner Range
A Castner Range National Monument would:
Designate the Castner Range federal lands within El Paso County, Texas as a National Monument to conserve and protect the integrity of the land.
Protect the Castner Range’s role as a water conservation sanctuary, its significance as a habitat for diverse and uniquely mountainous wildlife and vegetation, and for present and future generations to enjoy.
Require the Department of Interior (DOI) to create a Management Plan that will be used to protect habitat restoration and recreational enhancement opportunities and manage the remediation of hazardous substances or ammunitions and explosives by the Secretary of the Army.
Call for the establishment of the Castner Range National Monument Advisory Council to advise in areas regarding the preparation and implementation of the management plan.
This legislation is endorsed by the Conservation Lands Foundation, El Paso Community Foundation, Franklin Mountains Wilderness Coalition, Frontera Land Alliance, GreenLatinos, Nuestra Tierra Conservation Project, Sierra Club, and Wilderness Society.