Reduces Protection of the Land and Opens Vast Areas for Energy Development
Beaver Ceek Photo John Sztukowski
Feaured area: Beaver Creek ACEC
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) are managed to protect historical, cultural, scenic, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources values.
BLM Royal Gorge in 2017 proposed to increase ACEC areas from 79,000 to 101,500 acres in their preferred alternative! However the Department of Interior is not only rolling back these new proposals from the local field office, they are slashing overall ACEC areas to 46,300 acres, well below current levels!
DOI and BLM National dictated that the new preferred alternative completely remove the 12,000+ acre Beaver Creek ACEC, designated for its rugged undeveloped landscape with access to primitive recreation, scenic opportunities, wildlife sites, and remnants of historical use.
... stakeholder comments
Wilderness Aware Rafting says
BLM Disregards Conservation, Favors Mineral Development
Rafting the Arkansas Canyon is white-water excitment and awesome views of surrounding wild lands.
Wilderenss Aware Rafting, a Buena Vista business, supports protection for these lands. Check their video for a quick trip on the river.
Many people come to Colorado to enjoy our public lands and our many outdoor recreation opportunities. They stay to enjoy the quality of life our beautiful mountains, grasslands, rivers and wildlife offer.
The Upper Arkansas Valley, where we operate our whitewater rafting business, is one of the destinations people enjoy coming to because of the mountains, trails, camping opportunities and world-class whitewater rafting. It’s the beauty of the public lands that has allowed our business to succeed for over 34 years. Our area’s economy is supported by outdoor recreation on our public lands, which must be wisely managed and protected into the future...
As you drive west from Pueblo into the mountains, off to the northwest is a huge area of high desert. This includes the Gold Belt area and the Royal Gorge near Cañon City, as well as vast tracts of land along the U.S. Hwy. 50 corridor near Texas Creek, Cotopaxi and Howard.
An enormous swath of it – 658,000 acres worth – is administered by the Bureau of Land Management out of its field office in Cañon City. The agency is currently in the process of revising the current management plan, in place since 1996...
“Unfortunately, a lot has changed in two years,” says John Sztukowski, Conservation Director for Wild Connections, a conservation group for the Upper Arkansas and South Platte watersheds. “The BLM is now systematically ignoring public opinion input and stripping conservation from Colorado’s wildest public lands.”
...Land not designated for conservation could be on the block for the agency’s quarterly oil and gas lease auctions, as part of the Trump Administration’s push for expanded domestic energy development.
Rocky Mountain Wild's interactive map shows the BLM Preferred Alternative from the 2017 preliminary draft plan (left of bar) to the full draft released in June 2019 (right of bar). Drag bar to compare.
Click on the image to go to the interactive map. Move the bar left and right to see what BLM is not protecting in the 2019 Alt. D
Click the image to download
Wild News for September
Read about BLM's management plan, September hikes, and this summer's South Alpine restoration projects in Park County.
Click here or on the image to download a pdf file.
Wild Connections' mission is to identify, protect, and restore wildlands, native species,
and biological diversity in the Arkansas and South Platte watersheds