PARK CITY, UTAH (September 27, 2018) – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 2018 Rangeland and Sagebrush Steppe Stewardship Awards were presented Thursday during the Public Lands Council (PLC) 50th Annual Meeting in Park City, Utah. The awards recognize the effort of individuals and organizations who are dedicated to improving the health and productivity of public rangelands.
Recipients of the 2018 Rangeland Stewardship Award included Larry and Pennie Hooper, who operate on the Red Mountain lease in New Mexico, and Richard Ward, who operates on the Jim Sage allotment in Idaho. These recipients were nominated by their local field offices for their unique approach to protecting, restoring, and enhancing rangeland.
“Everyone who spends time on public lands reaps the benefits of ranchers’ environmental stewardship,” said Dave Eliason, President of the PLC. “It is important to recognize the work of cattle and sheep producers and understand their role in ensuring the health of our rangeland. There is great potential when we work with agency partners to achieve shared rangeland and management goals. I want to thank the Bureau of Land Management for recognizing these individuals.”
The awards represent one way the BLM recognizes the contributions of public lands ranchers. Other initiatives, like outcome-based grazing projects, also allow the BLM to work with public lands ranchers to explore a variety of innovative approaches to land management. Projects such as these provide managers and grazing permit holders greater flexibility in the management of permitted livestock while emphasizing ecological, economic and social outcomes in cooperative management of public lands.
“The contributions of public lands ranchers matter, and it’s wonderful that rangeland improvements and the benefits of livestock grazing on public land is being recognized by our friends in government,” Eliason said.