Progress on Greater Sage-Grouse, Wildfire Prevention, and Responsible Energy Development
WASHINGTON, Aug. 20, 2015 - U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack today made the following statement:
"This year, we are experiencing yet another devastating wildfire season, particularly in the drought-ravaged West. Climate change, drought, fuel buildup, insects and disease are increasing the severity of unprecedented wildfire in America's forests and rangelands, which impacts the safety of people, homes and communities. Development close to forests has also increased the threat to property, with more than 46 million homes in the United States, or about 40 percent of our nation's housing, potentially at risk from wildfire.
Wild Horses and Burros on Public Rangelands Now 2.5 Times Greater than 1971 when Protection Law Was Passed
BLM seeks to expand initiatives to address problems with new legislative authority
- 46,000 Horses Already Being Cared for Off-Range
- Off-Range Care of Unadopted Horses Would Exceed $1 Billion
- Necessary Horse Gathers Exceed Available Space and Funding
The Bureau of Land Management announced today that as of March 1, 2016, more than 67,000 wild horses and burros are roaming Western public rangelands – a 15 percent increase over the estimated 2015 population.