Donate Now! Subscribe

WA Wild Coordinates Letter Supporting Public Lands Rule With 100 Signers

Posted on May 10, 2024 in Conservation News, WA Wild Blog
Washington Wild is a proponent of the Public Lands Rule. Read Washington Wild’s public comment letter, signed by 100 Brewshed® Alliance Members, local businesses, outdoor recreationists, hunters and anglers, and conservation and wildlife organizations demonstrating strong statewide support. The Public Lands Rule is also supported by Governor Jay Inslee and Washington Attorney General, Bob Ferguson.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) oversees nearly 40% of all public lands in the United States, more than any other agency, including 400,000 acres in Washington. These lands provide clean drinking water and fresh air, are home to fish and wildlife, provide recreational access, and safeguard landscapes of cultural and spiritual significance to Indigenous Peoples and local communities. After 40 years of prioritizing extractive industries, the BLM has released a bold, comprehensive new Public Lands Rule to balance and uphold its multiple-use mission, thanks to the advocacy of people like you across the West and the country.

This new land management framework finally puts conservation and recreation on equal footing with extractive uses of BLM lands and encourages collaboration between local BLM staff with Tribal Nations and local communities.

Those of us who live, work, and recreate across the West know the climate crisis is here. As we bear witness to rapid changes to our local ecology through biodiversity loss, unrelenting drought, unprecedented wildfires, and increasing development pressures, the agency’s new direction will promote climate resilience for our local communities. Implementation of the Public Lands Rule will protect wildlife, watersheds, and cultural resources in places like the Juniper Dunes Wilderness, Chopaka Lake and Mountain Wilderness Study Area, the San Juan Islands National Monument, and Wild and Scenic eligible segments of the Yakima and Similkameen Rivers, as well as some of the last best remaining habitat for the imperiled sage grouse.

The BLM’s process to establish the new Public Lands Rule was transparent and accessible to the public. A 90-day comment period and numerous public meetings provided meaningful opportunities for the agency to hear what recreationists, Tribal communities, ranchers, energy developers, hunters and anglers, and many others grapple with on public lands. Of the more than 150,000 public comments submitted, the proposal was widely popular with 92% of the public comments in support. The sheer number of comments submitted reflects the passion Americans have for public lands.

Despite this overwhelming support for the BLM’s commitment to conservation, there are threats in Congress to undermine and overturn the Public Lands Rule. Your legislators need to hear from you to know where you stand. Please ask your members of Congress to vote to uphold the Public Lands Rule to ensure the public lands, human stories, and wildlife that make Washington State so unique are safeguarded for future generations.