From the DOI:
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell today announced more than $4 million in projects the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will implement to reduce the threat of rangeland fire and protect sagebrush habitat in the Great Basin region. The projects in Idaho, Utah, Nevada, and Oregon will support the Interior Department’s science-based strategy to address the more frequent and intense wildfires that are damaging sagebrush landscapes and productive rangelands.
“This funding will launch a number of projects that are ready to begin as we approach a potentially active 2015 wildfire season in the Great Basin, where a good portion of the remaining sage-steppe exists,” said Secretary Jewell. “Every task we complete puts us closer to conserving the sage-grouse, sage-steppe, and western rangelands that depend on these resources. These projects will not only improve rangeland health, but also help mitigate the risks to local economies that depend on healthy lands.”
The funding is part of the BLM’s newly-established Fire and Invasives Assessment Tool (FIAT) program dedicated to identifying BLM projects on federal land that can address threats from wildfires, invasive annual grasses, and conifer encroachment to sage-grouse and sagebrush steppe landscapes in the Great Basin region.
“The BLM is targeting our existing resources to address the biggest threats to the West’s most productive sage-grouse habitat,” said BLM Director Neil Kornze. “By strategically focusing our fire prevention and restoration efforts, we are laying the foundation for long-term conservation of the healthy rangelands that help define and sustain the West and its people.”
Learn more here: http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/secretary-jewell-announces-over-4-million-dollars-to-protect-sagebrush-lands-threatened-by-rangeland-fire.cfm
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