Barrasso: Biden Blocks Access to Critical Resources through National Monument Designation

August 8, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources (ENR) Committee, issued the following statement after President Biden announced his plan to designate areas in northern Arizona as a national monument. This designation would permanently block access to important mineral deposits, including vast amounts of uranium, in the area.

“President Biden is once again helping our enemies by denying Americans access to the resources we need. We currently import three times as much uranium from Russia as we produce. The Senate just voted to increase domestic uranium production to eliminate our reliance on Russia. Yet, President Biden is blocking access to key deposits of American uranium and other critical minerals to satisfy his leftwing base. This is not the time to cut off access to American resources,” said Senator Barrasso.


Background Information:


Through this decision, the Biden Administration has moved to block multiple use access which would not only cut off energy production, but also threaten grazing and other uses for the land. This designation would impact nearly 1 million acres of public lands in northern Arizona. Last Congress, the ENR Committee considered and chose not to report S.387, the Grand Canyon Protection Act, a bill to create a monument similar to President Biden’s monument designation.


Senator Barrasso has long supported increasing domestic energy production, including uranium and other crucial minerals. Most recently, he led the Nuclear Fuel Security Act, which overwhelmingly passed the Senate by a vote of 96-3 for inclusion in the fiscal year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act.