U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR  BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT  
ePlanning DOI-BLM-WO-WO2100-2018-0005-RMP-EIS (NW Colorado Greater Sage-Grouse RMP Amendment (2019))  
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Last Updated:
04/19/2019 11:22:49 MDT
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BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
COLORADO
 
 
 
The 2019 Record of Decision and Approved RMP Amendment
are available to view and download on the
Documents & Reports page.


THANK YOU FOR YOUR VALUABLE CONTRIBUTIONS THROUGHOUT THE PROCESS.
NORTHWEST COLORADO
Greater Sage-Grouse
Resource Management Plan Amendment (2019)
             
             
  On October 11, 2017, following direction in Secretarial Order 3353, the BLM issued a Notice of Intent to amend the Resource Management Plans (as amended in 2015) pertaining to Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) habitat management to bring the plans into alignment with the State of Colorado’s Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation Plan and other Colorado conservation strategies.  On March 14, 2019, the BLM issued a Record of Decision and Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment.  
             
             
  The Northwest Colorado Greater Sage-Grouse Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment and Record of Decision (Approved RMPA and ROD) is now available. The BLM prepared this plan amendment with valuable input from cooperating agencies and in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, as amended, implementing regulations, the BLM’s Land Use Planning Handbook (H-1601-1), and other applicable laws and policies.

The planning area includes the BLM Colorado Grand Junction, Kremmling, Little Snake, White River and Colorado River Valley field offices and encompasses approximately 4.2 million acres in ten counties. Within this area, approximately 1.7 million acres are mapped as containing Greater Sage-Grouse habitat administered by the BLM, along with approximately 2.8 million acres of BLM-administered subsurface federal mineral estate.
  On May 4, 2018, the BLM released a Draft Resource Management Plan Amendment and Environmental Impact Statement (Draft RMPA/EIS), which considered the potential impacts of the No Action Alternative and the Management Alignment Alternative (the Preferred Alternative). The Draft RMPA/EIS was available for a 90-day public comment period from May 4 to August 2, 2018.  BLM Colorado received 34,650 unique comment letters, forms, and emails, resulting in 595 substantive comments.

On December 7, 2018, the BLM Colorado released the Proposed Resource Management Plan Amendment and Final Environmental Impact Statement (Proposed RMPA/Final EIS) for a 30-day Protest Period and 60-day Governor’s Consistency Review. The BLM received 17 protest submissions, of which 12 were determined to have standing. The BLM Director concluded that the BLM had followed applicable laws, regulations, and policies and considered relevant information and public input during plan development, and resolved the protests without making significant changes to the Proposed RMPA/Final EIS.
  Issuance of this ROD completes the process of finalizing the Approved RMPA, which will guide management of Greater Sage-Grouse habitat on BLM-administered public lands in Colorado. The 2019 Approved RMPA and ROD are available electronically on BLM’s ePlanning website athttps://goo.gl/kmLtwT

The BLM appreciates the involvement of groups, organizations, cooperating agencies, and federal, state, and local agencies who contributed to the development of this Approved RMPA. This participation informed and improved the process and outcome.

Thank you for your continued interest in managing habitat for the Greater Sage-Grouse. Your ongoing involvement is encouraged during plan implementation and monitoring, as we move forward in managing our public lands together.


 
Information Contact
Diane Mastin
dmastin@blm.gov
(970) 244-3090
 
             
  The Greater Sage-Grouse national project website is located at: https://goo.gl/7wdKmM  
             
The BLM published the Final EIS and Proposed RMP Amendments on December 7, 2018, which initiated a 30-day Protest Period that was extended until January 23, 2019 due to a temporary lapse in Federal government funding.  The Final EIS and protest submissions can be found by clicking on the Documents & Reports link at left.  The BLM Director's Protest Resolution Reports are available online at:  https://www.blm.gov/programs/planning-and-nepa/public-participation/protest-resolution-reports 
Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) and Proposed Plan Amendments

The BLM and the Department of the Interior (DOI) worked closely with western governors of states with Greater Sage-Grouse habitat to determine whether some, all or none of the sagebrush habitat conservation plans adopted in 2015 should be amended.  A Draft EIS and RMP Amendments for BLM-managed public lands in Colorado was published on May 4, 2018, initiating a 90-day public comment period that ended on August 2, 2018.

The Management Alignment Alternative in the Draft EIS was proposed to enhance cooperation and improve alignment between BLM resource management plans for conserving sage-grouse habitat and the state’s plans for managing the sage-grouse species.  This alternative does not propose to replace the 2015 plans, but instead builds on them to increase flexibility, maintain access to public resources, and promote conservation outcomes.  Nearly three years of experience with the 2015 plans has shown the BLM and its partners what is working and what is not, and how the 2015 plans can be adjusted to recognize concerns.  The BLM considered the substantive comments received on the Draft EIS in developing the Final EIS and Proposed RMP Amendments.