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Senate OKs bill to establish Chiricahua National Park, measure still awaits House action

Chiricahua National Monument is closer to becoming a national park, a more prestigious designation that could bring jobs and tourists to Southeastern Arizona, after the Senate approved a measure without dissent.... Read more»

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Vets & Gold Star familes get free access to nat'l parks with new law named after late Grijalva staffer

The Alexander Lofgren Veterans in the Parks Act was named after Alexander Lofgren, an Afghanistan veteran who was working for U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva when he died in a hiking accident, and became law on Monday after President Joe Biden signed it into law with the National Defense Authorization Act. ... Read more»

Biden to restore protections to three national monuments slashed by Trump

The Biden administration will restore environmental protections to three national monuments, including two in Utah and the only marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean, that were diminished dramatically by his predecessor Donald Trump. ... Read more»

Land acknowledgments meant to honor Indigenous people too often do opposite

Many events these days begin with land acknowledgments - yet the historical and anthropological facts demonstrate that many contemporary acknowledgments unintentionally communicate false ideas about the history of dispossession and the current realities of Native Americans. ... Read more»

National parks refine ticketed-entry systems to manage visitor boom

Some of the country’s most famous national parks are grappling with an increasingly unsustainable rise in visitors - 327 million visits to U.S. national parks in 2019 — and ticketed-entry systems for summer-season visitors have been implemented at some landmarks.... Read more»

Grand Canyon business owners: Tourists returning, but not like before the pandemic

Grand Canyon National Park has seen a rebound in domestic visitors in 2021 after the pandemic shutdown for several weeks in 2020, but not enough to compensate for the volume of international travelers the park usually attracts, officials say. ... Read more»

Don’t hike so close to me: How humans can disturb wildlife up to half a mile away

Millions of Americans are traveling this summer as pandemic restrictions wind down, and a recent review of hundreds of studies covering many species found that the presence of humans can alter wild animal and bird behavior patterns at much greater distances than most people may think.... Read more»

Guest opinion

Biden's America the Beautiful Plan will help ensure national parks are protected, accessible

I served the National Park Service for 30 years and I have seen the impacts of climate change. From melting glaciers and dying trees, to rising tides and more intense wildfires, our national parks are on the front lines. At Saguaro National Park, near my home in Tucson, climate change has greatly impacted the establishment of new saguaros to replace older and dying ones.... Read more»

National park visitors – and money – are coming back after 2020 plunge

After hitting a 40-year low in the pandemic year of 2020, national park visitors – and their dollars – are steadily returning, but they are still below pre-pandemic levels, according to new National Park Service data. ... Read more»

National parks struggling with maintenance would get boost in Biden budget

Basic needs at the largest U.S. national parks top the Biden administration’s first proposed lists of projects to receive funding through public lands trust funds, showing how much maintenance is needed even as parks brace for record numbers of visitors this summer.... Read more»

Are we ‘normal’ again? Answers to 13 questions on Arizona's changing COVID-19 protocols

As vaccinations rise and safety protocols change as Arizona eases into a hopeful, post-pandemic life, here are 13 frequently asked questions about rules and regulations governing schools, businesses, activities and programs. ... Read more»

Need rescue? Hikers lost or requiring supplies in Arizona can find help from satellite communication device

Some of those who venture into Arizona’s vast wilderness aren’t properly prepared for it. They become lost, run out of supplies or don’t have enough water. And the COVID-19 pandemic has drawn even more people outside, creating more problems. Enter SPOT, a company that makes satellite communication devices that can make exploring remote areas in Arizona and other places safer, especially for newcomers to the outdoors.... Read more»

Researchers at Petrified Forest discover fossil of a reptile with claws and a beak

A team of researchers at Petrified Forest National Park discovered fossilized remains of a new species of prehistoric reptile. The 220-million-year old burrowing species, named Skybalonyx skapteris, is a drepanosaur, an ancient reptile that had a claw on its tail and a birdlike beak.... Read more»

Tribal leaders, advocates question reopening at Grand Canyon, other parks

Arizona tribal leaders told House lawmakers Tuesday that moves to reopen national parks are being made without needed health safety measures to protect tribal members or park visitors during the COVID-19 pandemic.... Read more»

Study: Climate change will continue to scorch the Southwest

Temperature data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration compiled by Climate Central show summers in Arizona will only get hotter thanks to climate change. ... Read more»1

Report: Using funds to keep parks open in government shutdown violated law

The Trump Administration's shift of Parks money during the government shutdown this year "tears at the fabric" of separation of powers, a Government Accountability Office report found.... Read more»

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