Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Secretary Jewell on national monuments: 'Everybody is coming to me with their wish list'

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell came home this weekend, ready to take a victory lap after President Obama’s designation on Friday of three new national monuments in the California desert totaling 1.8 million acres. After all, Air Force one had just taken a detour en route to Palm Springs, so Obama could see the blooming desert he had just preserved, and monuments that almost doubled the land he has protected in his presidency. But the home folk wouldn't give the former CEO at Recreational Equipment, Inc., any rest. Jewell has honored Saturday night by the Alaska Wilderness League, which pitched designation of a new national monument on land in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge that is coveted by Big Oil. "Everybody is coming to me with their wish list," Jewell joked. She is being urged to back a national monument for spectacular canyon county of the Owyhee River in Eastern Oregon. It's not far from where armed property rights extremists occupied a wildlife refuge headquarters...more

This is a heck of a way to run a railroad.  You take your wish list to one person, who then takes it to one other person, who can grant you your wish.  Under this model, three people can determine how 640 million acres are managed.  No public hearings, no debate, no involvement of Congress. And this model is being used heavily by the current administration. You know, the same folks who promised "sound science" and transparency in the management of these lands.

Will be interesting to see if the Republican Congress will seek to amend this model under a new President.  If not, then the three person model will have been endorsed by the Republicans.  Let's call it the Tres Hombres Treehugger Triangle and hang it around the neck of every Republican sitting in Congress.

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