Hawaii

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Hawaii has incredible public lands and waters, which protect these incredible places and contribute to the state’s $7.8 billion outdoor recreation economy. Sadly, the Trump administration is targeting two marine national monuments off the coast of Hawaii: Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument and Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument.

Thankfully, Hawaii has a public lands and waters champion in Senator Brian Schatz, who has been a strong supporter of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, currently the largest marine protected area in the world. Working with local communities and stakeholders, Senator Schatz even formally proposed the 2016 expansion to former President Barack Obama. Regarding the Trump administration’s attacks on public lands and waters, Senator Schatz stated, “Papahānaumokuākea, Yellowstone, Acadia, and every other national park and monument are a testament to the beauty of this country. That’s why we will fight to protect every tree, river, and outlook for future generations of Americans to learn from and enjoy.”

President George W. Bush first designated the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in 2006 and the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument in 2009, before President Obama expanded them in 2016 and 2014, respectively – highlighting the bipartisan desire to protect these waters. These monuments protect natural, scientific, cultural, and biological wonders and is the largest marine protected area in the world.

Both the Papahānaumokuākea and Pacific Remote Islands are threatened by two departmental reviews in the Trump administration: Interior and Commerce. In addition to Secretary Zinke’s review, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is also reviewing designations and expansions of marine sanctuaries and monuments. We urge the administration to listen to the 2.7 million comments to keep public lands and waters in public hands. As long as any of these public lands and waters are under attack by the Trump administration, none are truly safe from review.

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