Parks and Public Lands

Protecting America’s Public Lands

Roughly 300 million acres of American lands, most in the West, are set aside as public lands and maintained using taxes paid by all Americans. These lands managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, and National Wildlife Refuge System are by charter supposed to be managed for multiple uses including recreation and provision of wildlife habitat and clean water sources. Increasingly, however, they are run for the benefit of extractive industries and with little regard for the preservation of the rare wildlife or iconic natural beauty for which they are famous. 

With the help of conscientious range management specialists, scientists, law enforcement officers and other workers within these agencies, PEER is uncovering how our precious national heritage is being sold to the highest bidder, often under the direction of poorly qualified and illegally appointed political appointees. 

Grazing and Rangeland Health

Livestock grazing allows heavily subsidized private operators to degrade our public lands.

Plastic Free Parks

Our national parks are drowning in a rising tide of plastic waste.

Cell Tower Invasion

Cell phone towers spread across national parks without proper planning and public input.

Off-Road Wreckreation

Off-road vehicle abuse is a growing problem on our public lands, especially in the West.

Oil and Gas Drilling

Environmental and public health risks are being ignored by regulatory agencies and decisions heavily influenced by profit-driven industries.

“Orphaned” Park Wilderness

Twenty-five million acres of recommended wilderness in our national park system are in limbo, marooned by politics.

REPORT | The Biden Administration’s Bureau of Land Management

As the Biden administration nears its halfway point, there are both encouraging signs of progress and plenty of room for growth when it comes to conserving public lands. Stronger leadership from the Biden administration and within federal land agencies is critical to act on both the climate and biodiversity crises. No public lands agency more epitomizes the challenges and opportunities ahead than the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) – the country’s largest land manager at more than 245 million acres.

Read the report»

Mapping Rangeland Health

BLM Rangeland Map 2012

Our interactive BLM Rangeland Health Standards Evaluation Data (2020) on MangoMaps is based on data from 2020, obtained via the Freedom of Information Act. PEER worked with a former BLM contractor to analyze what these records reveal about the condition of our public lands and BLM’s discharge of its duties to safeguard them.

Download the Rangeland Health Fact Sheet»

NEWS FROM PEER

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Responsible Recreation

More than a dozen of our country’s most seasoned law enforcement and resource management specialists from every major public lands agency and several administrations are taking a stand to end irresponsible off-road vehicle use on our public lands. Meet the Rangers for...

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