Date: January 12, 2009
Contact: David Abrams (406) 533-7617
East Pioneer Watershed Assessment Ready for Public Review
An assessment of resource conditions on public lands within the East Pioneer Watershed is available for public review.
Located in Beaverhead County of southwestern Montana, the watershed assessment area covers about 25,000 acres of public land on 17 grazing allotments, as well as 1,600 acres of unleased and unallotted public parcels.
In preparing the assessment, the Dillon Field Office of the Bureau of Land Management evaluated the watershed’s resources according to the five standards for rangeland health. These standards include maintaining properly functioning upland and riparian areas; assuring that water quality and air quality meet state standards; and providing for biodiversity. Abandoned mines, forest health, fuel conditions, and recreational issues were also assessed.
A National Environment Policy Act (NEPA) document will be prepared to analyze alternatives for revising management where resource concerns were found within the watershed. The NEPA document will be completed by resource specialists from the Dillon Field Office, in coordination with grazing lessees, other agencies, and the interested public.
The BLM welcomes public comments to help formulate alternatives and define issues for the environmental assessment. To be most useful, public comments must be submitted by February 13, 2009. The report has been mailed to all individuals who expressed an interest in the project and asked to be on the mailing list. If you would like to receive a copy of the Watershed Assessment Report please call the Dillon Field Office at (406) 683-8000, or email MT_Dillon_FO@blm.gov. The Watershed Assessment Report is also available for review online at: http://www.blm.gov/mt/st/en/fo/dillon_field_office.html