The Bureau of Land Management hosted the first in a series of three informational sessions on a new agency proposal to broaden its conservation efforts.
The draft Conservation and Landscape Health Rule would overhaul a variety of existing land management procedures at BLM. The changes would give it clearer authority to prioritize the health and resilience of ecosystems across almost 250 million acres of federally-owned land. Agency officials and supporters of the rule say it would place conservation and outdoor recreation on level ground with industrial uses like ranching and oil and gas drilling that BLM has facilitated for many years. Opponents and their Republican allies say it will likely curb those uses as much of the rule revolves around “conservation leases.”
It’s a new mechanism that would protect certain areas from development for up to ten years. And those leases would be proposed by environmental non-profits or other applicants.