The Río Grande del Norte National Monument in New Mexico was recently created.
This resulted from the efforts of recreational organizations and a wide variety of other groups, including local governments, chambers of commerce and local businesses. Obviously, these groups understand that the protection of natural areas expands economic opportunities.
Extractive industries, like logging and mining, exploit the most profitable resources in the short term, but later returns keep diminishing. Consider the ghost towns of the West and places whose former glory has disappeared.