Leveraging Public Lands to Connect America
In the 21st century, broadband communications are as vital as roads and bridges, powerlines, and water and sewer systems. Broadband access supports economic growth and competitiveness, provides access to health care and educational opportunities, and enhances civic participation.
While 97 percent of Americans in urban population areas have access to high-speed internet and broadband services, access for rural and Tribal areas continues to lag. Many of these areas are located near public lands the BLM manages, giving the agency a key role in closing the digital divide and supporting local economies.
The BLM makes public lands available for siting broadband tower infrastructure through right-of-way (ROW) authorizations. We also manage ROWs for 5,000 miles of energy corridors that are compatible with fiber optic and telephone lines.