The battle for public lands continues to be a sticking point for Patagonia. The outdoor apparel titan’s ethos has always been one of doing the least harm – e.g. transparency in their supply chain and sustainable practices while advocating for the planet.
In the final months of President Obama’s tenure, Patagonia initiated a campaign to protect Bears Ears in southeastern Utah. Three days before he left office, the then-president designated the area a national monument.
Since coming into office, though, President Trump has deputized Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to conduct a review of national monument designations like Bears Ears – a move that could result in the overturning of many existing public land designations.
In response, Patagonia has purchased $700,000 in radio and television airtime in Secretary Zinke’s home state of Montana, as well as Utah, and Nevada, to run ads imploring the public to pressure Secretary Zinke to do the right thing and “keep public lands in public hands.”
“In Patagonia’s almost 45 years of doing business, they’ve never run a television advertisement,” said the company in a press release. “But with America’s public lands under unprecedented threat, Patagonia continues its legacy of advocating for the planet by bringing its voice to the airwaves.”
According to the release, the effort in Secretary Zinke’s home state is to “[remind] him of what he said, ‘our greatest treasures are public lands.'” In Utah, Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments could be recommended to be rescinded, and in Nevada Gold Butte and Basin and Range National Monuments are also under threat.
“There is limited time before Secretary Zinke makes his August 24th decision on the remaining 21 national monuments and it is Patagonia’s hope that he will follow in the tradition of President Teddy Roosevelt and conserve our shared public lands for future generations,” said the release. “But no matter the outcome (we) won’t stop fighting to protect our public lands. (We) believe the voices of the people will be heard.”
This piece was originally published on The Inertia.