The Bureau of Land Management initiated a 90-day public comment period on Friday, Aug. 17, on the Trump administration’s plans and alternative management options for two units at Bears Ears National Monument.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Monument Management Plans for the Indian Creek and Shash Jáa units of the monument on its ePlanning website.
The public may visit https:goo.gl/uLrEae to review the documents.
Click on “Documents & Reports” on the left side of the page to see a menu of scoping meeting materials for wood-cutting, rangeland management, cultural resources, livestock grazing, recreation, minerals and travel management.
Public comments on the proposed plans are accepted through Nov.15.
“We recognize that local communities and the public at large care deeply about the future of Bears Ears National Monument. We invite the public to review and comment on the proposed plans, and to consider how they would like to see this remarkable landscape managed now and for future generations,” said BLM Utah State Director Ed Roberson.
The BLM began the planning for the Bears Ears National Monument units on Jan. 16. Indian Creek and Shash Jáa units are co-managed with the Manti-La Sal National Forest. As part of that action, the BLM said that it would prepare an Environmental Impact Statement.
Since then, the BLM and the Forest Service have worked with cooperating agencies to develop draft management plans and a draft EIS reflecting the input from stakeholders and the public.
“We’ve been on the ground working with and listening to local communities, stakeholders and the public,” BLM Canyon Country District Manager Lance Porter said, “and we have identified a variety of options to meet the challenges of providing quality recreation experiences for visitors, facilitating uses like grazing or gathering firewood, and protecting the natural and cultural resources that we are entrusted to manage.”
The draft executive summary on the BLM ePlanning website includes a range of alternatives addressing management issues brought forward during scoping.
The BLM said the four alternatives explained in the document range from minimal change in management, to an approach providing maximum management flexibility for multiple uses while trying to protect monument objects and resources.
Various management decisions may be made that include pieces of each of the alternatives explained in the documents.
The next phase of the planning process is developing the Final Environmental Impact Statement and Proposed Monument Management Plan.
The BLM encourages comments on all alternatives and potential management actions, as the final management plans may include portions of any alternative.
To help the BLM properly consider and incorporate feedback, please include a reference to a specific page or section for your comment. Comments may be submitted by email to email@example.com or by mail, Attention: Lance Porter, BLM, Canyon Country District Office, 82 E. Dogwood, Moab, Utah 84532.
The BLM asks people submitting comments to include their names and address.
Public comments may be submitted through November 15
“We’ve been on the ground working with and listening to local communities, stakeholders and the public and we have identified a variety of options to meet the challenges of providing quality recreation experiences for visitors, facilitating uses like grazing or gathering firewood, and protecting the natural and cultural resources that we are entrusted to manage.”