Rep. Young Disappointed With Administration’s Wild Lands Policy
Washington, D.C. - The House Committee on Natural Resources held a hearing yesterday on the Administration's "Wild Lands" order, Secretarial Order No. 3310. This order, issued December 23, 2010, by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, directs the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to reanalyze millions of acres of public lands to determine if they contain Wilderness characteristics.
Upon determination, Order No. 3310 would require such lands to be classified as "Wild Lands" which would cause BLM to manage these areas as de facto wilderness. "Once again, the Obama Administration is putting the interests of environmentalists above all others," said Rep. Young. "First and foremost, Secretarial Order No. 3310 is illegal. Secretary Salazar's order not only circumvents Congress' authority in designating Wilderness areas, but it disregards the healthy balance between resource development and Wilderness characteristics outlined in the Alaska National Interest Lands Claim Act (ANILCA).
"At a time when our country is recovering from a recession and facing extraordinary turmoil in the Mideast, we should be creating jobs and working to develop our own resources, rather than placing land off-limits, which is precisely what Secretary Salazar's Order aims to do. In the long run, all this order will do is make us more beholden to countries throughout the world who are developing their resources!"
Under the Wilderness Act of 1964, only Congress has the authority to designate lands as Wilderness areas.
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