Senate Confirms Tracy Stone-Manning as Head of Bureau of Land Management

Image: Wikimedia Commons

By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer

The Senate confirmed Tracy Stone-Manning to head the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) after months of attempts by conservatives to thwart her approval. While Republican leaders protested her confirmation because of her involvement with a tree-spiking incident in 1989, Stone-Manning was approved along party lines, 50-45.

 

Why this Matters: Stone-Manning is the first Senate-confirmed director of the BLM in five years after the Trump Administration relocated the agency’s headquarters to Colorado and implemented an “energy-first” agenda. 

 

The BLM is an essential part of the Interior Department, especially in fighting climate change. It manages 245 million acres of public land and 700 million acres of mineral rights, ensuring that oil, gas, and coal extraction do not interfere with the conservation of natural resources. Stone-Manning will play an integral role in President Biden’s plan to gradually stop drilling for oil and gas on federal land. 

 

“Few agencies are as important for protecting and promoting America’s public lands, and in the years to come, the BLM will play an even greater role in our government’s efforts to fight climate change,” Senator Chuck Schumer of New York said.

 

Not Seeing the Forest for the Trees?

In their opposition, Republicans emphasized an incident that occurred when Stone-Manning, who is now 56 years old, was a graduate student. At the time, she warned the US Forest Service that two men planned to spike trees in Idaho’s Clearwater National Forest, a tactic that would damage logging machinery but also put workers in danger. Even though Stone-Manning testified against the men in a trial convicting them, Republicans have dubbed her an eco-terrorist.” 

 

Senator Schumer dismissed these claims as “cheap, out-of-context attacks.”

 

Democrats maintained that Stone-Manning effectively balanced the needs of environmentalists, ranchers, and fossil fuel companies as senior adviser for conservation policy at the National Wildlife Federation.

“She is someone who knows the value of collaboration, she is someone who can listen, who can reason, that knows our public lands, that’s recreated on our public lands her whole life,” said Senator Jon Tester of Montana.

Up Next

Melting Russian Permafrost Threatens Buildings and Infrastructure

Melting Russian Permafrost Threatens Buildings and Infrastructure

By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer The earth is collapsing under Russia’s northeastern towns as global warming melts the permafrost beneath them. Permafrost occupies 65% of Russia’s landmass, making this massive thawing particularly destructive.    “There isn’t a single settlement in Russia’s Arctic where you wouldn’t find a destroyed or deformed building,” said Alexey Maslakov, […]

Continue Reading 280 words
New WWF Initiative Supports Black Land Ownership

New WWF Initiative Supports Black Land Ownership

By Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer Heirs’ property is a type of land ownership whereby property is passed down without a will, and it’s one of the main reasons Black families in the US are losing their land. But the Mobile Basin Heirs’ Property Support Initiative announced yesterday could help families in Mississippi’s Mobile Bay […]

Continue Reading 435 words
Biden Reinstates Protections for Three National Monuments

Biden Reinstates Protections for Three National Monuments

By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer The White House announced Friday that President Biden will use his executive authority to restore protections for three national monuments drastically reduced during the Trump Administration. He will reestablish and increase the boundaries of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments, both of which are in Utah. The orders […]

Continue Reading 396 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.