news releases

02 May 2024

Hispanic Access Celebrates Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument Expansion

Category: News Releases

On May 2, President Biden answered the call of Senator Alex Padilla and Representatives John Garamendi and Mike Thompson, Northern California Tribes, over 300 scientists, local elected officials, and community leaders and expanded the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument to add 13,753 acres of public lands.

“In California, Latinos and other people of color are disproportionately affected by the lack of access to nature and the benefits it provides compared to white people,” said Maite Arce, president and CEO of Hispanic Access Foundation. “People of color are two times more likely to face this disparity. The expansion of Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument is an important step toward rectifying this imbalance by improving access to the outdoors for Latinos and communities of color in the area.”

The expansion of the national monument also safeguards public lands considered sacred by the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Molok Luyuk, which is the name provided by the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation to the area that is now being protected, serves as a critical wildlife corridor between the existing monument and other protected areas for species such as tule elk, mountain lions, and black bears. It is also home to imperiled wildlife, including bald and golden eagles, badgers, peregrine falcons, and over 30 species of rare plants. Protecting this important habitat will help preserve biodiversity and allow for continued wildlife migration in the midst of a changing climate. It will also help the State of California and the Biden Administration reach their shared goal of protecting 30% of public lands and waters by 2030.”

“As a youth pastor, I am always looking out for the best interests of the next generation," said Pastor Alvaro Gamez, Hispanic Access Foundation Por la Creación Faith-based Alliance member. “The expansion of the Berryessa National Monument is a great step towards preserving the land for the next generations and conserving this God-given gift we call Earth."

The Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument was originally designated by President Obama in 2015. It is managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and stretches from Napa County in the south to Mendocino County in northern California.

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