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HAF Statement on President Biden’s Executive Orders
20 January 2021

HAF Statement on President Biden’s Executive Orders

Category: News Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, President Joe Biden took executive action to take immediate steps to address the climate crisis and protect our health and environment from its most catastrophic impacts. On his first day of presidency, Biden’s executive action included:

  • Reviewing the boundaries and conditions of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments and the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monuments.
  • Fixing the country’s broken oil & gas leasing regime 

In response to the executive orders, the Hispanic Access Foundation released the following statements:


“We appreciate President Biden’s swift actions to begin reversing the environmental damage caused by Trump Administration policies. The landscape within Bears Ears National Monument is the ancestral home of many southwestern Native American tribes. Navajo, Ute, Zuni, Hopi, and other Native American people depend on the land within the region to sustain their traditional livelihoods and cultural practices, such as hunting, gathering, and ceremonies. Unfortunately, this area is threatened by urgent threats from looting, vandalism, and mining.

“President Biden’s efforts are an important first step towards restoring permanent protection for these irreplaceable cultural, historic, and natural treasures. We all share a strong moral obligation to be good stewards of our public lands and to intentionally preserve and celebrate the diverse cultural heritage that makes up this nation. By restoring these national monuments, we can ensure that future generations can enjoy and learn from these special places, which are part of what makes America great.” 


“HAF applauds the Biden Administration’s efforts to pause oil and gas leasing for the first time in 40 years. In order to address the climate crisis, we must fix the broken oil & gas leasing program. Fossil fuel production on public lands has caused about a quarter of U.S. greenhouse gas pollution. Latino communities are disproportionately affected by these carbon emissions and its environmental hazards. By pausing the program, and recognizing it needs to be fixed, President Biden is addressing carbon emissions from public lands is an essential part of achieving our climate goals. 

“His efforts to reform this broken system will make sure our public lands and waters are used responsibly and sustainably and remain accessible and beneficial to all of our children and our grandchildren. This is a great first step towards a future where our public lands and waters support millions of clean energy and outdoor recreation jobs and generate reliable revenue to fuel local economies and support important state programs in all communities. 

“As the Biden Administration moves forward with efforts to protect our lands and waters, and promote environmental and climate justice, we must ensure that the benefits of nature are realized equitably, with access to nature for underserved communities, honoring the sovereignty of tribal nations, and prioritizing climate resilience and pollution reduction in environmental justice communities.”