Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and the Trump Administration have made it clear that they do not plan to manage our public lands under a true multiple use mandate. Instead, the Secretary and President call for energy dominance on our public lands for oil, natural gas, and mineral development.

Through actions that streamline the oil and gas leasing process on public lands, it is clear this deregulation has disregarded voices from mountain communities that rely on a healthy, well-managed public lands systems for economic stability, outdoor recreation, and cultural vitality.

This focus excludes other user groups from public lands management including the $887 billion outdoor recreation economy that depends on a healthy public land system and bolsters mountain town economies.

It also accompanies out of date leasing and royalty rules on public lands that are shortchanging taxpayers approximately $90 million per year. These rules must be addressed to ensure taxpayers are getting their fair share, and to ensure that public lands are managed with multiple uses such as conservation and recreation in mind.

Additionally, in 2016 the Obama Administration’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) finalized the Methane Waste Prevention Rule that would regulate methane leaking and flaring from natural gas wells on BLM managed public lands. These methane leaks are dangerous for both our atmosphere and human health. Now, the Trump Administration has been working to eliminate this rule. 

Most recently, the BLM released a new proposed rule that would eliminate the conservation and public health requirements that had been updated with the 2016 rule. This new rule eliminates the 2016 upgrades and reverts back to weak requirements that lead to extreme loss of taxpayer revenue and dangerous emissions of wasted methane.

The Mountain Pact is working to bring the mountain town voice to the numerous and consequential attacks on public lands to ensure public lands are managed for multiple uses including hunting, fishing, camping, and mountain biking, as well conserving our pristine lands and wildlife for future generations to enjoy.

The Mountain Pact