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Management Of The Blm's Public Land System

4105 words - 16 pages

Management of the BLM's Public Lands System The government has control of over one-third of the nation's land, and 398 millionacres of that is controlled by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM 6). This land hold awide diversity of resources, from timber, and grazing lands found on the surface to a massof oil, natural gas, and minerals laying below the earth. The history of these lands ishardly a dull story, because it is the story of the taming of the 'Wild West'. Should theBLM though, still be controlling these lands under the same laws that where put in affectto establish the 'Western frontier'. I feel that a radical reevaluation of these laws needs totake place, on order to adapt them to the changing demographic and technologicalenvironment of our society. The laws that are remaining are allowing companies to hurtthe land, which is against the mission statement of the BLM. The BLM mission statement say, the Bureau is responsible for the balancedmanagement of the public lands and resources and their various values so that they areconsidered in a combination that will best serve the American people. Management isbased upon the principles of multiple use and sustained yield; a combination of uses thattakes into account the long-term needs of future generations for renewable andnonrenewable resources. These resources include recreation, land, timber, minerals,watershed, fish and wildlife, wilderness, and natural, scenic, scientific and cultural values.(BLM 7). Therefor by allowing these old laws to remain they are pulling away from theremission statement. Throughout the 80's the Bureau of Land Management developed a host ofprograms and emphasized a number of others - outdoor recreation, wildlife and fisheries,toxic materials management, and wetland enhancement, to name a few - but there are stillmany problems that must be addressed. Due to the increasing demand for outdoor recreation, there has been anovercrowding in our local, state, and national park. There is the demand for BLM to domore in outdoor recreation. Eight of the 10 states with the highest population growthbetween 1970 and 1980 were states with substantial acreages of public lands administer bythe BLM. (BLM 12) The visitation to those lands has increased nearly three-fold in thepast 20 years, and there is an expected increase of between 40 and 60 percent by the year2000. (BLM 12) The amount of people that visit our park system each year is having aprofound effect on the ecosystem of the park. An ecosystem can only absorb the effectsof a small number of man made facilities on it. The number of large complexes that thepublic wants in their parks have effects that extend beyond there immediate boundaries.Yellowstone Park has to dispose of nearly 7000 tons of garbage every year. (Houston 3)The BLM needs to expand efforts to maintain facilities to protect public investments andthe health and safety of the visiting public. Also, provide additional facilities with...

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