Over the past several years, the Western States have experienced rapid growth and development, and the public lands have been increasingly used for outdoor recreation and tourism. Many rural communities are reliant on tourism to sustain their economies. As a result, the management of the scenic values of public lands has become a much more important aspect of natural resource management to BLM.
BLM’s responsibility to manage the scenic resources of the public lands is established by law:
The Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA) states, “...public lands will be managed in a manner which will protect the quality of the scenic (visual) values of these lands.”
The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) requires that measures be taken to “...assure for all Americans...aesthetically pleasing surroundings....”