Report: BLM Dispersing Environmental Review Team

By Bret Jaspers
Published: Monday, October 14, 2019 - 5:23pm
Updated: Tuesday, October 15, 2019 - 8:50am

William Perry Pendley
Bret Jaspers/KJZZ
William Perry Pendley

The Trump administration is geographically separating the Bureau of Land Management team that looks at the potential environmental effects of major projects on public lands.

According to the Washington, D.C., outlet The Hill, the team works on NEPA reviews, the National Environmental Policy Act. 

The Hill cites documents showing the 20-person unit going to seven different states, including one position in Arizona. Twelve positions will go to Denver.

BLM Acting Director William Perry Pendley said last week that the NEPA process should be quicker.

“I believe that NEPA is essentially where projects go to die,” Pendley said at a journalism conference in Colorado. “We have an obligation to do NEPA. But the American public has, deserves an answer. It deserves a timely answer.”

Pendley said relocating the Bureau will bring employees closer to the lands they manage. Former BLM staff and environmentalists say it’s designed to get experienced people to quit. 

The BLM manages over 12 million acres of public land in Arizona.

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