Protect scenic areas: Participate in BLM’s ‘visual inventories’

STARTING NEXT WEEK all Wyoming residents will have an opportunity to help the Bureau of Land Management decide where and how to site wind turbines and other types of development on BLM lands.

Your participation will help the BLM update what the agency calls its visual resource management inventories for the Rawlins and Rock Springs field offices.

The BLM will hold open houses next week where people can tell the agency which scenic places they would like to see protected.

WHY THESE INVENTORIES ARE IMPORTANT:

The BLM uses them to ensure that iconic, historic, and locally cherished landscapes retain their scenic qualities and are not marred by development.

As the Casper Star-Tribune editorial board said today: “We all know there are scenic places that are an inherent part of Wyoming, and their loss would be extremely detrimental to our overall quality of life.”

Some things that can affect scenic qualities include wind energy development, oil and gas drilling, and mining.

The updated visual inventories will be used by the BLM for the next 15 to 20 years when it decides whether and how to allow development on public lands.

This review of the visual resources in the Rawlins and Rock Springs field offices may well be one of the best opportunities for Wyoming residents to help the BLM make good decisions about where it allows future development.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE

Attend one of the BLM’s open houses and help it answer the following questions:

* What areas do you think should be off-limits to development because their scenic values are too important?

* What types of land uses (e.g. recreation facilities, recreation activity, livestock grazing, oil and gas development, wind energy, etc.) are most detrimental, in your opinion, to the scenic values of these landscapes?

* How much development in a given landscape would negatively affect its visual qualities? How dense and/or intense would the development need to be to have negative impacts on the viewshed?

Click here or on the map below for a zoomable PDF that shows the boundaries of the Rock Springs and Rawlins field offices. The yellow areas on the map indicate the BLM lands that are subject to the visual inventory review.




MEETING INFORMATION

Time for all Meetings: 4-7:30 p.m.

Date and Location:

Monday, July 12, BAGGS, Little Snake River Valley Ed. Center
360 Whipporwill

Tuesday, July 13, RAWLINS. Jeffery Memorial Community Center
315 East Pine Street

Wednesday, July 14, ROCK SPRINGS, Western Wyoming Community College
2500 College Drive, Room 1302

Monday, July 19, SARATOGA, Platte Valley Community Center
210 Elm Street

Tuesday, July 20, LARAMIE, Albany County Library
310 South 8th Street

If you cannot attend an open house, help the Wyoming Outdoor Council represent you. We will be submitting comments based upon our members’ responses to the questions above.


To help with this effort, please contact Nathan Maxon at 307-332-7031 ext. 15 or at nathan@wyomingoutdoorcouncil.com.



Posted in *All posts, Activities

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