PUBLIC HEARING SET TO ADD 20,000 ACRES TO JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK

Earlier this fall, the National Park Service solicited public comment on adding approximately 20,000 acres of federal, state, and private lands to the southern border of Joshua Tree National Park. At one time, these lands were a part of Joshua Tree National Monument. The property is bounded on the north, south, and west by Joshua Tree National Park, and on the east by the Colorado River Aqueduct. The Park Service announced yesterday (Monday) that it received more than 9,000 comments on the adjustment, and has found no significant impact on the effects of changing the park’s boundary by adding these 20,000 acres.
At this time, these 20,000 acres do not include 8,600 privately owned acres in the Eagle Mountain mining area, owned by the Eagle Crest Energy Corporation. (Unless the proposed or current use of the land changes, this area is slated to be a hydroelectric power project. The project would generate energy by pumping water from the Chuckwalla aquifer to a retention pond up on the mountain. Water in the pond would then flow downhill to a hydroelectric pump to create energy.)
A public hearing on the transfer of the 20,000 acres will be held in Palm Desert January 18, and public comments will be accepted through February 16. The decision on whether to transfer the acreage to the park service will be made by the Bureau of Land Management.
https://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectId=59291

Public Meeting – Notice of Proposed Withdrawal
January 18, 2017, 6 to 9 p.m.
UC Riverside Palm Desert
75080 Frank Sinatra Drive

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
David Smith, Superintendent, Joshua
Tree National Park, 760-367-5502 or
Doug Herrema, Field Manager, Bureau
of Land Management, Palm Springs
South Coast Field Office, 760-833-
7100.

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