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New BLM Planning Rule a Boon to Public Involvement

Planning 2.0 helps bring public land-use management into 21st Century

WASHINGTON – A new rule that modernizes planning for our public lands will allow for more public input while taking a more comprehensive look at the impacts of development on fish and wildlife populations, air, water and hunting, fishing and recreation opportunities.

The Bureau of Land Management’s Planning 2.0 initiative updates a decades-old rule by providing earlier and more frequent chances for the public to weigh in and gives land managers the tools needed to adapt to changing conditions on the landscape, the National Wildlife Federation said.

“It has now been more than 30 years since BLM last adopted rules governing its planning procedures.  In those 30 years, the value that we all place on America’s public lands has only grown, including an increased recognition of their importance to fish and wildlife and outdoor recreation,” says Kate Zimmerman, the National Wildlife Federation’s public lands policy director.  “The updates issued by BLM significantly improve opportunities for the public, as well as state and local governments, to weigh in on how our public lands and the important resources they provide should be managed.  The National Wildlife Federation believes those changes represent needed improvements to modernize BLM’s planning procedures.”

The new rule calls for applying the best science when making land-use decisions and taking a landscape-level look at the natural resources to address conflicts upfront, providing more certainty for the public and developers, Zimmerman adds. The National Wildlife Federation encourages members of the public to take advantage of the increased opportunities for input to ensure that public lands and the fish, wildlife and recreation those lands support are sustained for generations to come.

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