PostRegister.com - Full Article
By MICHAEL WRIGHT Bozeman Daily Chronicle
Aug 28, 2018
BOZEMAN, Mont. — There are millions of acres of landlocked public land in the western U.S., and conservation advocates say a soon-to-expire conservation fund is vital to unlocking access to them.
A new report produced by the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and onX Maps says a total of 9.52 million acres of federal public land across 13 western states are surrounded by private lands and inaccessible to the public. In Montana, an estimated 1.52 million public acres are unreachable, a total surpassed in the report only by Wyoming and Nevada.
Joel Webster, Western lands director for TRCP, said any hope of gaining public access to some of those lands relies on the Land and Water Conservation Fund, a pot of federal money set to expire on Sept. 30.
“This is the tool to address this issue,” Webster said. “If this program is not reauthorized, we’ve got a problem without a solution...”
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