The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) held the first of four public scoping meetings to begin the process of writing an Environmental Assessment (EA) focusing on targeted grazing of annual grasses in the Great Basin region.
The EA, titled Targeted Grazing of Annual Grasses in Great Basin Ecoregions in Nevada is an effort to fulfill the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requirements. The purpose of the EA is to analyze the environmental effects of targeted grazing treatments to reduce annual invasive grass species in order to reduce the risk of wildfires.
According to the BLM, targeted grazing is defined as the “application of a particular kind of grazing animal during a specified season, duration, and intensity to accomplish specific vegetation objectives rather than maximizing the performance of the grazing animal.”
The BLM intends to analyze four alternatives which include the No Action, Early Spring Grazing, Perennial Growth Season Grazing and Dormant (Season) Grazing.
The No Action alternative would “continue land management consistent with existing Resource Management Plans, and would not include the use of targeted grazing for management of invasive annual grasses.”
The Early Spring Grazing alternative would begin March 1 and continue to April 30; Perennial Growing Season Grazing would begin May to September 31, and Dormant Grazing would operate from October 1 to February 28. Beginning and ending dates, as well as the number of cattle, would depend on specific conditions in each of the locations chosen for targeted grazing.
According to Katherine Dyer, State Range Program Lead for the BLM, these targeted grazing treatments would be authorized annually and would not affect 10-year grazing permits. The program is voluntary.
The purpose of the scoping meetings is to receive comments from the public and stakeholders about the specific project.
The BLM expects the EA to be completed in late January or early February 2020. The scoping period is from July 22 to August 21, 2019.
For more information about the project, contact Katheryn Dyer at firstname.lastname@example.org with “NVSO Targeted Grazing” in the subject line.