Nonprofit says Bureau of Land Management may be challenged by proposed rule change

Published: Friday, June 30, 2023 - 4:27pm

The Bureau of Land Management is winding up a public review period for a proposed rule change that would bring outdoor recreation on par with other land uses.

Conservationists have embraced the concept, but one nonprofit has concerns.

Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility agrees with the principle of the rule change but says it is concerned about the execution.

The BLM plans to expand its land health standards program under the new rule, but that will require active range management, and PEER says the agency is already understaffed.

"Our biggest concern is that the agency doesn’t have the capacity to implement the sort of ambitious goals that they have laid out in this rule," said Chandra Rosenthal, a spokeswoman for PEER. "Because right now we think that they are really struggling with the agenda that they have, so to add more to their plate is, we think, is just going to stretch the agency and the employees even more."

The deadline for public comment is July 5.