Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has acted to resume critical work in our wild lands called the "BLM Wild Lands Policy." The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages the largest tracts of unprotected wilderness quality lands in the lower 48 states, so this is an important policy for land conservation and habitat resiliency.
Unfortunately, anti-conservation forces in Congress have gained ground by "defunding" the Wild Lands Policy. We need to make sure that the 2012 budget bill reinstates funds for this policy.
The opponents of the BLM Wild Lands Policy are promoting oil and gas wells for America's dwindling wild lands. Currently, much more BLM land is allocated to oil and gas development than to wilderness protection. And, the amount of public land that is pristine enough to qualify as having wilderness characteristics is ever shrinking.
Please tell your elected officials to protect America's wild lands by making sure the BLM Wild Lands Policy is reinstated in the 2012 budget.
Subject: Please retain the BLM Wild Lands Policy and do not agree to any provision defunding it in the 2012 Budget.
I was very disappointed by the inclusion of a provision in the budget continuing resolution de-funding the Bureau of Land Management's Wild Lands Policy. Federal law directs the BLM to inventory for and protect wilderness resources.
Much of America's natural heritage remains unprotected and most of that is on lands managed by the BLM. These are remarkably special places. From Utah's red rock canyonlands, to New Mexico's Otero Mesa grasslands, and Oregon's Owyhee desert these lands are vital to the natural world and provide an enduring wilderness resource for the nation enduring only if protected.
I encourage you to retain and implement the provisions of that policy and to oppose the inclusion of any provision de-funding it in the 2012 Budget.
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