Western Lands Debate
Top of Mind with Julie Rose - Radio Archive, Episode 251 , Segment 1
Episode: Western Lands Debate, One Hour China
- Mar 11, 2016 10:44 pm
- 51:08 mins
Guests: Rob Bishop, Utah Congressman, Chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources, Co-sponsor of the Public Lands Initiative; Christopher Solomon, Contributing Editor, Outside Magazine; Brigham Daniels, Law Professor at Brigham Young University specializing in environmental and natural resources law The federal government owns nearly half the American West, and even larger portions of the land in states like Utah, Nevada and Oregon—where angry state’s rights activists recently occupied a wildlife refuge for 41 days. Behind that occupation was the belief that lands owned by the federal government would be better managed by locals. For the past three years, Utah Congressman Rob Bishop has been spearheading what some might consider an impossible task. He’s out to craft a “grand bargain” to settle land disputes that have plagued this state for nearly a century. His proposal, released in January, places millions of acres into new wilderness areas across Eastern Utah, while also opening up vast stretches of land for oil and gas development and off-road vehicle access. Nobody is entirely happy with the plan – as is the case with compromises. If it clears Congress, it could be a template for resolving land disputes across the West.