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WildEarth Guardians’ statement on Bureau of Land Management’s final public lands rule

April 23, 2024
Chris Krupp, WildEarth Guardians, ckrupp@wildearthguardians.org
In This Release
Public Lands  
#PressStatement, #ProtectWhatYouLove
SANTA FE, N.M. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced last Thursday morning a final new public lands rule that puts conservation and restoration of public lands on equal footing with energy development and mining. WildEarth Guardians offered the following statement in response to the final public lands rule: 

We are grateful for the new public lands conservation rule, and hopeful it will have a meaningful impact in how BLM manages the public’s lands.  For almost 50 years the BLM has been required, under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, to conserve resources and prevent undue degradation to public lands. To date the agency has failed to put conservation on equal footing with extraction. The prior rules didn’t make a lick of difference for ecosystem integrity, imperiled wildlife species, or the climate crisis–not because of the rules themselves, but because they weren’t being faithfully implemented on the ground. So, while the new rule is good, it’s not enough to create the change that is needed; a significant culture shift at BLM is required. While representatives of extractive industries regularly claim “bureaucrats in Washington” are meddling in Western affairs, local BLM offices are the ones making decisions on lands under their jurisdiction. For this new rule to have lasting impact, it must be embraced, rather than dismissed, by local BLM offices.

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