Point Arena-Stornetta National Monument Entry Sign
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell and
BLM Field Office Director Rich Burns
–BY VICTORIA BRANDON, REDWOOD CHAPTER CHAIR
I recently was privileged to journey out to the Mendocino coast for a day of pure joy, a celebration of a spectacular landscape, of the communities that cherish its wonders, and of the most admirable attributes of this our nation.
On March 11, 2014 President Obama signed a proclamation adding the 1665-acre Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands to the
California Coastal National Monument, allowing the Monument to “walk on shore” (in the words of California BLM Director Jim Kenna) for the first time. Then on March 12 a large and enthusiastic crowd joined Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, numerous other agency representatives, representatives of Congressmen Mike Thompson and Jared Huffman, local tribal members, and community activists to rejoice at the culmination of so many years of collaborative effort. As said Secretary Jewell, “it takes a village to make a monument.”
Under a bright blue sky full of wheeling gulls and a backdrop of crashing surf we hugged, cheered, applauded, waved flags and– in conclusion– sang “This Land” with students from the Pacific Community Charter School.
Permanent protection of the Point Arena-Stornetta area has long been one of the Redwood Chapter’s top conservation priorities. We are proud to have played a role in this triumph, applaud the President’s fulfillment of his State of the Union promise to “use my authority to protect more of our pristine federal lands for future generations,” and urge him to continue to build his legacy in this way.