Press Release Mar 7, 2017

Repeal of Planning Rules a Loss for Parks, Public

Congress eliminates opportunities for public input on landscape planning.

WASHINGTON – The Senate voted today to repeal the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) “Planning 2.0” rules, important resource planning rules meant to better protect and manage public lands.

In development since 2014, Planning 2.0 set a new standard for how the agency balances competing uses across 247 million acres of public lands. Prior to Planning 2.0, the public was involved too late in the planning process and given too little sway in how planning decisions were scoped, resulting in imbalanced plans that favored industry over other beneficial uses. As a result, plans were frequently challenged, dragging out land-use planning for years.

Planning 2.0 was set to correct these inefficiencies and make the system more efficient by giving the public a stronger voice from the beginning. It added more and earlier opportunities for public input, and improved the ability to consider national park landscapes when planning how to use nearby public lands.

Congress repealed the Planning 2.0 rule under the Congressional Review Act, which not only repeals the rule but also prohibits the BLM from implementing a similar rule in the future, unless approved by Congress. National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), national parks communities, sportsmen, local businesses and thousands of citizens worked for years to ensure that Planning 2.0 would make the planning process more efficient and effective.

Below is a statement from Nicholas Lund, NPCA’s Senior Manager for Landscape Conservation:

“The Senate’s move today is a loss for the public and for our national parks. Repealing Planning 2.0 needlessly and purposely takes away the public’s voice in how lands and national parks are managed. National parks are only as healthy as their surrounding landscapes, and we strongly believe that the input of the people who live near and use those landscapes is critical to their proper management. Public land is owned by the public. Stripping away these badly-needed improvements, and preventing them from being implemented again in the future, is the same as stripping away the voice of the American people for how their land should be managed. To us, that is unacceptable.”

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About National Parks Conservation Association

Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than 1.2 million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historic, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.