Originally published by Evan Blythin, Las Vegas Sun
Friday, July 13, 2018 | 2 a.m.
The Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is a global treasure. Two million people a year pay tribute to the environment, geology and beauty of the canyon. The treasure is being threatened on three fronts by local and federal agencies.
The Clark County Commission has joined up with a commercial enterprise in attempting to place thousands of homes and public facilities at the center of canyon land. The land does not conform to the land-use plan or zoning for the area but the commission is funding legal opposition against those who wish to save Red Rock Canyon from commercial exploitation.
Meanwhile, the Bureau of Land Management has persisted in listing 1,000 acres as disposable. Thousands of people have pointed out that selling pristine acreage means death for flora and fauna, and would diminish an important national conservation area.
The BLM is fast-tracking its management plans so public response will be minimal.
The county also wants about 30,000 federal acres for development.
Recently, a representative for pro-development argued that there was not one individual who could be shown to be affected by commercial development in the canyon. I see myself and 2 million people a year affected by the commercial abuse of a unique public treasure.
Or, maybe I am wrong. It may be time to consider hotels in the canyon, cute shopping malls, restaurants and trinket shops. There is money to be made, a treasure to be lost.