The Bears Ears are two mountains in the south east corner of Utah that, along with the surrounding area, were designated a National Monument by President Obama at the end of 2016. In America, a national monument gives Federal Protection second only to a National Park. damaging commercial activities are largely banned.
There are fears that the new Presidential administration will attempt to overturn the decision to protect the area and in his fiscal budget for 2018, President Trump has pledged to strengthen America’s energy security by increasing funding for the development of oil, natural gas, coal, and renewable energy on public lands.
That could mean that the Bears Ears, and other parts of the United States that are currently protected could be opened up to a new wave of exploration and exploitation.
Meanwhile there are fears that President Trump could also overturn much of the progress that had been made to protect the environment made by previous administrations. Tom visits Boston, America’s academic heart, to hear from Obama’s former energy secretary, Professor Ernest Moniz and former administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Gina McCarthy, to find out what impact they think the next four years of a Trump presidency will have on the environment.
Presenter: Tom Heap
Producer: Martin Poyntz-Roberts.