Notes from closed meeting show how Interior aims to weaken environmental laws

Read the full story in the Washington Post.

Near the end of September, officials at the Interior Department bureau that oversees hundreds of millions of acres of public land hosted a conference with state, county and local government representatives to discuss ways to loosen environmental rules.

Bureau of Land Management hosts told attendees and those joining the invitation-only meeting remotely that they wanted to streamline a powerful law that protects wildlife and public land, the National Environmental Policy Act. They asked how its rules could be smoothed out to limit delays that slow public and corporate development so that the federal government, as President Trump and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke have said, can be a better partner rather than a hindrance. The meeting covered ways to fulfill the president’s executive order to remove impediments to new infrastructure, mining and other development on federal land.

At least two groups not on the invitation list obtained the call-in information for the meeting and secretly sat in and took notes, which one group provided to The Washington Post.

Author: Laura B.

I'm the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center's Sustainability Information Curator, which is a fancy way of saying embedded librarian. I'm also Executive Director of the Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable. When not writing for Environmental News Bits, I'm an avid reader. Visit Laura's Reads to see what I'm currently reading.

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