ePlanning DOI-BLM-ORWA-V000-2017-0038-RMP-EIS (Southeastern Oregon Resource Management Plan Amendment)  
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Last Updated:
08/29/2019 07:09:14 MDT
What's New
The public comment period on the Draft Southeastern Oregon Resource Management Plan and Draft EIS has ended.  

The Bureau of Land Management has begun review of comments received during the comment period.  BLM will develop formal responses to all substantive comments and will make these available to the public.  Public comments on the Draft RMP Amendment/EIS will be considered in the development of a Proposed RMP Amendment and Final EIS, planned for release late Fall/early Winter, 2019.  The BLM appreciates the public's and other partner's involvement in this process.  

Draft Southeastern Oregon Resource Management Plan Amendment and Draft EIS available for public comment for 90 Days - (May 31, 2019 - August 28, 2019)

As part of its commitment to healthy and productive landscapes, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is proposing to amend the Resource Management Plan (RMP) for public lands within the Southeastern Oregon planning area of the Vale District. The Malheur Field Office is seeking public comments on the Draft Southeastern Oregon Resource Management Plan (SEORMP) Amendment/Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which evaluates five alternatives that address lands with wilderness characteristics, off-highway vehicle use, and livestock grazing in the 4.6 million acre planning area. The planning area is bounded on the east by Idaho, on the south by Nevada, on the north by the Vale District’s Baker Field Office, and on the west by the BLM Burns District. (For a map of the Planning area and to use the interactive map see the "Maps" link on the left
The Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) of 1976, 43 U.S.C. § 1701 et seq., is the statutory authority that provides the primary direction to the BLM to develop, maintain, amend, and revise land use plans, which guide the use of public lands. Furthermore, FLPMA provides that the BLM shall manage public lands under the principles of multiple use and sustained yield. The Purpose and Need of this SEORMP Amendment is to comply with the provisions of a 2010 Settlement Agreement which, requires the BLM to undertake an amendment of the SEORMP and do the following, address wilderness characteristics, off-highway vehicle (OHV) use, and grazing management by:
1) Considering information from wilderness characteristics inventory.
2) Developing a full range of allocation alternatives with respect to off-highway vehicle (OHV) use, that includes both effects on and protection of wilderness characteristics. OHV allocations include open, limited, and closed.
3) Developing grazing management alternatives that reduce grazing authorizations upon receipt of a voluntary grazing permit relinquishment.
4) Analyzing adjustments in grazing use where Standards for Rangeland Health are not met due to current livestock grazing.

Public review and comment on All Alternatives (For more details see "How to get Involved" link on the left)
This EIS describes five alternatives: continuation of existing management (No Action Alternative) and four Action Alternatives. Within the specific limits described in the Purpose and Need (Chapter 1, Section 1.2), the alternatives represent different approaches to managing lands with wilderness characteristics, off-highway vehicle use, and livestock grazing. The Alternatives in the EIS evaluate a comprehensive range of alternatives that address potential management options where between zero and 76 units with wilderness characteristics would receive protection. Three of the alternatives evaluate a range of changes to OHV management and evaluate changes to livestock grazing management on BLM-administered lands in the Southeastern Oregon planning area. The EIS contains an overview of resource allocations and provides a detailed and comprehensive comparison of the alternatives. Management direction for all other resources and uses will continue to be managed in accordance with the existing direction in the SEORMP, as amended by the ARMPA.
Submitting substantive comments
While a preferred alternative has been identified in the document as required by 40 CFR 1502.14(e), the identification of a preferred alternative does not represent a final decision. For this reason, we encourage your comments on ALL Alternatives and management actions in the Draft EIS. BLM may pick a combination of options from any of the alternatives for the development of the Southeastern Oregon Proposed RMP Amendments/Final EIS. Substantive comments provide new information; identify different ways to meet needs; point out flaws in the analysis; suggest alternate methodologies and reasons for use; make factual corrections; or identify different, credible research which, if applied, could result in different effects. In addition, comments pertaining to any of the alternatives would be most helpful to ensuring that the range of alternatives is adequate. Please make substantive comments that are as specific as possible as follows:
1) Question, with reasonable basis, the accuracy of information in the EIS.
2) Question, with reasonable basis, the adequacy of, methodology for, or assumptions used for the environmental analysis.
3) Present new information relevant to the analysis.
4) Present reasonable alternatives other than those analyzed in the EIS.
5) Cause changes or revisions in one or more of the alternatives.
To ensure comments are considered, the BLM must receive written comments within 90 days of the Federal Register Notice.

What RMP is being amended?  2002 SEORMP ROD  - click here to go to the document on the BLM Web 
Other Related Information and Documents used for this RMP Amendment

2010 SEORMP Amendment Scoping - Completed

The Vale District conducted public scoping in 2010. Although the efforts identified a number of potential issues, the SEORMP amendment will only address those issues identified in the 2010 Settlement Agreement. The BLM considers the additional issues raised during scoping as relevant; and will consider them in future environmental analyses or as Plan Maintenance if appropriate. A complete list of all issues identified is found in the October 2012 Scoping Report for each of the planning areas. (To view this document click the documents tab on the Left)

2005 Wind Energy Development Final Programmatic EIS
The Wind Energy Development Final Programmatic EIS evaluates the potential impacts associated with the proposed action to develop a Wind Energy Development Program, including the adoption of policies and best management practices (BMPs) and the amendment of 52 BLM land use plans (which included the SEORMP) to address wind energy development. The Final PEIS includes proposed amendments to 52 BLM land use plans in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming, as described in Appendix C of the Final PEIS. (Click here to go to the documents and ROD on the web site) 

2015 Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment (ARMPA) - Completed
In the fall of 2012, the BLM Oregon State Director issued IM OR-2013-009, which put the RMP amendment on hold, pending completion of an Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment (ARMPA). The ROD was signed in 2015, which amended all RMPs in eastern Oregon. The ARMPA, modified management direction on approximately 4,092,000 acres of public lands in the SEO planning area, representing approximately 88 percent of those lands in the Southeastern Oregon planning area. With the completion of the ARMPA, the BLM is reinitiating the SEORMP amendment effort.            
Click here to view all BLM Oregon ARMPA documents.

2019 Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Record of Decision and Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment 
This Oregon Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment makes 21,959 acres of key Research Natural Areas available to livestock grazing. It also updates language relating to compensatory mitigation to bring the 2015 Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved Resource Management Plan Amendments into consistency with current Department and BLM mitigation direction and policy. These six 2019 Approved Resource Management Plan Amendments build on the work that was completed in 2015 to respond to the deteriorating health of the sagebrush landscapes of the American West and the declining population of the Greater Sage-Grouse, a ground-dwelling bird that was under consideration by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) for protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Click here to view document

Wilderness Characteristics Assessments
For more information about the Wilderness Characteristics Inventory maintenance that will be used during this planning effort, click here to go to the documents on the BLM web site.