Public Land and Forest System Withdrawals
Withdrawals are formal lands actions that set aside, withhold, or reserve federal land by statute or administrative order for public purposes. A withdrawal creates a title encumbrance on the land. Withdrawals are established for a wide variety of purposes, e.g., power site reserves, military reservations, administrative sites, recreation sites, national parks, reclamation projects, wilderness areas, etc. Withdrawals are most often used to preserve sensitive environmental values and major federal investments in facilities or other improvements, to support national security, and to provide for public health and safety.
Oregon and Washington have about 2000 active withdrawals, roughly 25 percent of all the withdrawals nationwide. The 2000 withdrawals embrace approximately 29 million acres, roughly 12 to 14 percent of the acreage withdrawn nationwide.
Currently, in Oregon and Washington there are:
- 1000 Federal Power Act and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission withdrawals -- about one-third of the nationwide total, and second only to California, by state.
- 483 Forest Service withdrawals -- about 40 percent of the nationwide total. Of those, 24 comprise National Forests, 54 are wilderness, and the remainder are primarily roadside zones, research natural areas, recreation and administrative sites.
- 482 BLM withdrawals -- including one-third of the waterpower withdrawals in the nation, as well as a large number of small recreation sites.
- 29 Indian reservations, 57 Wildlife Refuges and 127 Reclamation withdrawals.