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Western Public Lands

Bureau of Land Management

Sportsmen: BLM Right on Track with Plan for CO's South Park

Date: 
Thu, 03/09/2017

Sportsmen have joined a diverse group of stakeholders to comment on a new management plan for Colorado's South Park. Image: Bill Dvorak

By Judith Kohler

DENVER  – Colorado sportsmen say the release of preliminary management proposals for public lands in South Park and surrounding areas shows that the Bureau of Land Management intends to keep the public informed and involved in decisions affecting one of the region’s premier hunting, fishing and recreation spots.

The BLM’s Royal Gorge Field Office on Wednesday released preliminary management scenarios that include a proposed master leasing plan for oil and gas development in South Park. A master leasing plan, or MLP, is a planning tool available to BLM intended to better balance uses of public lands. Park County and local elected officials as well as landowners and sportsmen and women asked the BLM to write an MLP for South Park because of its important fish, wildlife and water resources.

"The Bureau of Land Management is on the right track in South Park. Park County, along with numerous other cooperating agencies, have worked effectively with BLM on the draft alternatives for the plan and we, too, will continue working with the county, diverse stakeholders and BLM to gain a balanced future for these public lands."  ~ Suzanne O’Neill, executive director of the Colorado Wildlife Federation

Win for Wildlife: Master leasing plan proposed in southwest Colorado

Date: 
Thu, 10/06/2016

Colorado BLM has proposed a master leasing plan for parts of southwest Colorado. Image: Flickr-PDK Outdoor

DOLORES, Colo. -- After hearing from hunters, anglers, area residents and outdoor enthusiasts, the Colorado Bureau of Land Management has decided to pursue development of a master leasing plan for new oil and gas development on public lands in southwest Colorado.

The master leasing plan, or MLP, has been proposed in Montezuma and La Plata counties and includes the gateway area to Mesa Verde National Park and archeological sites.

“The Tres Rios area has valuable wildlife habitat that includes important migratory routes, winter range as well as calving and lambing areas. It deserves the additional management protections for these areas that an MLP can provide,” said Bill Dvorak, the National Wildlife Federation’s public lands organizer in Colorado.

 

Interior launches needed review of federal coal program

Date: 
Mon, 05/30/2016

The Black Thunder coal mine in Wyoming's Powder River Basin. Image: EcoFlight

CASPER, Wyo. -- The National Wildlife Federation and its state affiliates have joined other sportsmen's and conservation organizations in urging the Interior Department to modernize its federal coal program for the good of wildlife, conservation and the public.

Federal officials are reviewing the program to ensure a fair return to U.S. taxpayers, require that mined land is reclaimed before more public land is leased, improve reclamation standards and provide funding to restore wildlife habitat.

The Bureau of Land Management held public meetings across the country as part of the assessment of the federal coal program in what would be the first update of regulations in more than 30 years.

“As more coal companies declare bankruptcy and struggle to cover costs, American taxpayers face the risk of getting stuck with the bill to reclaim the growing backlog of disturbed land, much of it in the heart of important wildlife habitat. Now more than ever, it is time for coal leasing reform on our public lands: our fish and wildlife depend on it; our workers depend on it; and our way of life depends on it." ~ Brenda Lindlief Hall, NWF coal program coordinator.

 

Sportsmen support cutting methane emissions to reduce waste, protect wildlife

Date: 
Sun, 02/28/2016

The Bureau of Land Management will hold a hearing in Lakewood March 1 on a rule to reduce oil and gas venting and flaring. Image: Lew Carpenter

LAKEWOOD -- In meetings from New Mexico to North Dakota, sportsmen and women spoke out for reducing methane pollution from oil and gas operations on federal lands.

The Bureau of Land Management is taking public comments until April 8 on a proposed rule that will update 30-year-old regulations by requiring oil and gas producers to cut the methane that's wasted through venting and flaring and leaks from equipment. In addition to harmful pollution, a Government Accountability Office report estimates that tribes and taxpayers lose as much as $23 million in royalty revenues when natural gas is wasted.

"Implementing a strong rule to reduce flaring will cut pollution and put more money back into local governments and taxpayers' pockets." ~ Todd Leahy, conservation director for the New Mexico Wildlife Federation.

 

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