NMA Applauds President, Congress for Overturning BLM’S Muddled Planning 2.0 Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Mining Association (NMA) applauded the President for signing the congressional joint resolution of disapproval that overturns the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Planning 2.0 Rule.

The final rule, published on Dec. 12, 2016, was subject to a successful resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act, culminating in a Senate vote to disapprove on March 7.

“As companies that mine important mineral and energy resources on federal lands, our industry needs clarity around the procedures for land use plans but, Planning 2.0 instead delivered added confusion and ambiguity,” said Hal Quinn, NMA president and CEO. “Rather than streamline the land use planning process, as was the original stated intent of the rule, Planning 2.0 achieved the opposite, placing obstacles in the path of responsible mining and other necessary activities that depend on federal land while at the same time marginalizing the participation of states and local stakeholders.”

In comments on the proposed rule, NMA cited numerous concerns with the rule, including the uncertainty created by the potentially unreliable landscape-scale planning boundaries; ambiguity in planning decision authority; and the de facto ranking of land use priorities despite the BLM’s multiple use management mandate under the Federal Land Planning and Management Act.

NMA was joined by a large coalition of more than 90 stakeholder groups united in opposition to the rule. In addition to NMA, these organizations included the National Association of Counties, the American Farm Bureau Federation and the Public Lands Council.