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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release November 9, 2000


Today I am pleased to sign proclamations extending greater protection to two irreplaceable pieces of America's natural and cultural heritage, the Vermilion Cliffs in northern Arizona and the Craters of the Moon in central Idaho. With this action, nearly one million acres of unique natural and historic resources already in public ownership are fully protected.

The Vermilion Cliffs monument covers 293,000 acres of federal land on the Colorado Plateau in northern Arizona. Humans have explored and lived on this geologic treasure since the earliest known hunters and gatherers crossed the area 12,000 or more years ago. California Condors, Desert bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope, mountain lion, and other mammals roam the canyons and plateaus.

The expansion of the Craters of the Moon monument, originally created by President Coolidge in 1924, adds 661,000 acres of volcanic craters, cones, lava flows, caves and fissures of the 65-mile-long Great Rift, a geological feature that is comparable to the great rift zones of Iceland and Hawaii.

With these proclamations, this administration continues its commitment to preserving and restoring America's natural treasures, from the Florida Everglades to the California redwoods, for this and future generations.