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BLM nominates Nine Mile to historic register

Rock art found in Nile Mile Canyon. The area is internationally known for its beauty and history.
Nine Mile Canyon is perhaps best-known for its thousands of petroglyphs and pictographs.

In cooperation with Utah's historic preservation office, the United States Bureau of Land Management plans to nominate the cultural resources sites within Nine Mile Canyon to the National Register of Historic Places.

Nine Mile Canyon is perhaps best-known for its thousands of petroglyphs and pictographs. Listing in the National Register would further acknowledge the unique and irreplaceable cultural resources.

The area is also recognized as home to the remains of Native American granaries and villages as well as numerous historic structures.

Established by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the register is the U.S. government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures and objects deemed worthy of preservation.

The BLM of Utah, with the support of the state's historic preservation office, the BLM is nominating Nine Mile to the register as a multiple property listing, which groups related sites under a common theme. The multiple-property category is the most appropriate nomination method because it lists eligible sites that contribute to one of the listed themes. Additional themes and newly recorded sites can readily be added in the future.

"Working in partnership with the state, we came up with the best approach to recognizing the significance of Nine Mile Canyon's cultural resources," said Selma Sierra, Utah's BLM director. "Multiple-property listings are more inclusive of important sites and listed sites are not artificially encumbered by a hard boundary line. One of the long term benefits of a multiple-property listing is recognizing new sites as they are found."

Every year, approximately 30,000 properties at locations across the nation are added to the historic register, pointed out the federal agency.

The BLM and the state preservation office have joined forces to see that nine Mile Canyon receives the recognition and honor National Register listing provides.

Although register listing is an honor, it does not carry additional resource protections.

To further protect the historic resources, Nine Mile Canyon would be handled as an area of critical environmental concern under the BLM Price field office proposed resource management plan, continued the federal agency.

In Nine Mile Canyon, oil and gas leasing would be subject to major constraints - one of which is no surface occupancy, indicated the BLM.

The constraint means that none of the 26,200 acres of BLM administered federal land in the canyon's area of critical concern can be surface occupied with oil and gas pumps, drilling rigs or tank batteries, explained the federal agency.

The BLM continues to work to preserve Nine Mile's resources as part of the federal agency's multiple use mandate while facilitating environmentally responsible energy development.

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