Biden proposal would let conservationists lease public land much as drillers and ranchers do

California Waiting For Floods
A boat crosses Pine Flat Lake as snow-capped mountains are visible in the distance in the Sierra National Forest, Calif., Friday, April 21, 2023. The reservoir can hold up to 1 million acre feet of water and is expected to receive more than 3 million acre feet this spring from the melting snow, according to David Merritt, general manager for the Kings River Conservation District. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

The Associated Press

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) – More than a century after the U.S. started selling oil leases on public lands, the Biden administration is seeking to let conservationists lease government property to restore it.

The idea is stirring debate over the best use of vast taxpayer-owned property in the West.

The proposal would allow conservation groups or others to buy leases to restore degraded government land, much the same way oil companies buy leases to drill.

The head of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management says the proposal would make conservation an “equal” priority.

But some Republican lawmakers contend the changes are a backdoor to excluding agricultural and energy development interests.

Read the full story on AP News right here.

(Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

5/15/2023 8:12:54 AM (GMT -5:00)

Categories: Regional and US News