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BLM Offices in Washington, D.C. Photo: Doug Kapustin, For The Washington Post
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is a small federal agency but it manages 250 million acres of land around the country, much of it in the West, and recently the Trump Administration announced that it wants to move most of its employees from Washington, D.C. to Colorado and other Western states as part of a larger agency re-organization. According to The Washington Post, the move is part of a larger administration-wide effort to shift power away from the nation’s capitol and shrink the size of the federal government. Worse yet, its new “acting” leader, attorney William Perry Pendley, has espoused that the Declaration of Independence calls for all federal lands to be sold into private hands and that he believes the best owners would be fossil fuel and other corporations.
Why This Matters: That is our land they are talking about — it is one of the most significant differences between the U.S. and other countries — we have saved some of our land and natural resources for the benefit of everyone. These national treasures are one of the few remaining things we share as a nation. And they want to sell it off taking away another piece of our common heritage.Moreover, their mismanagement of our federal government is also hollowing out something else that made the U.S. great — our government is a collective organization that could do big things for the benefit of all of us. The BLM move may never happen but the employees whose lives hang in the balance while we fight about it may just walk away, particularly as the Administration turns the purpose of the agency on its head. What a lose-lose proposition.
Pendley’s View – We Did Not Shrink The Monuments Enough
“Pendley wrote in 2016 that ‘the Founding Fathers intended all lands owned by the federal government to be sold,’ and as recently as this month he lauded fossil fuel extraction as an ‘energy, economic, and environmental miracle.'”
“Pendley has been critical of the Interior Department’s shrinking of Bears Ears and Grand Escalante National Monuments — because he feels the president has not been aggressive enough in offering the public lands for what he views as their sole purposes: ‘ranching, mile, oil and gas, or energy activities,’ according to a 2016 interview.”
by Julia Fine Last month, we wrote about the outbreak of locust swarms traveling from East Africa to the Indian subcontinent. Now, as the New York Times reported yesterday, the locusts have made their way to New Delhi. The capital region’s fields, metro stations, suburbs, and more are now teeming with swarms. We previously noted […]
Our nation is in the midst of a moment where statues and monuments celebrating our racist past are being reevaluated and taken down. However, some on the political right have begun calling into question the validity of this conversation. Conservative media personality Meghan McCain wrote in a tweet that we’re “one week removed from entire […]
The House was set to vote to pass the Great American Outdoors Act, which will provide nearly $1B annually for parks and other conservation, but a group of Western Republicans has raised procedural hurdles that will delay final passage until late July, The Hillreported yesterday. And, a new report from the Center for American Progress (CAP) urges the United States to launch a major effort—a “Race for Nature” — to help the nation’s agricultural producers, who are facing a bleak economic future, by increasing opportunities to pay them for their conservation efforts.
Why This Matters: As the CAP Report explains, “Family farmers and ranchers need lifelines…Bold and swift investment in nature conservation can provide one.”
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