A massive proposed oil and gas development project would cause irreparable damage to Nine Mile Canyon in Utah, home to one of the most important and extensive collections of prehistoric rock art panels in the world.
Nicknamed the “world’s longest art gallery” because of its more than 10,000 individual petroglyphs and pictographs made primarily by the Fremont and Ute Indian cultures, the Canyon was included on the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s list of America’s Eleven Most Endangered Historic Places in 2004.
The National Trust is urging citizens around the world to speak out about the harm that will result from this new development proposal if it is allowed to move forward as planned. The project would increase truck traffic inside the Canyon by 416% causing enormous amounts of dust, chemical dust suppressants and vehicle exhaust to accumulate on and irreparably harm this international treasure.
A recently released study shows a direct link between truck traffic in the Canyon and the deterioration of the rock art panels, due to a build up of dust and harmful chemicals used to control dust on the road. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), which manages much of the land in and around Nine Mile Canyon, needs to recognize the findings of this study and present plans for a new access road to the exploration site, rather than continuing to rely on the narrow dirt roads that run through Nine Mile Canyon.
What You Can Do:
We urge you to send an email to the Bureau of Land Management today at UT_Pr_Comments@blm.gov and copy the National Trust at firstname.lastname@example.org. The comment deadline connected with the project is May 1, 2008 and these comments will be shared with the public.
Let BLM know that it is imperative for them to protect the thousands of prehistoric petroglyphs and pictographs in Nine Mile Canyon. Tell BLM that it is unacceptable to allow these international treasures to be damaged by the dust and chemicals and exhaust generated by current and proposed truck traffic in Nine Mile Canyon. Ask BLM to perform a detailed evaluation of alternative routes that trucks could use to access the project area instead of the existing dirt roads in Nine Mile Canyon and its narrow side canyons. Encourage BLM to fulfill its role as the steward of the world’s longest art gallery and save our shared heritage for future generations.
Please visit our website at http://www.preservationnation.org/take-action/advocacy-center/action-alerts/nine-mile-canyon-at-risk.html for more information, or get information from the BLM and the Draft Environmental Impact Study at http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/price/energy/Oil_Gas.html.