SEMA eNews Vol. 14, No. 22, June 2, 2011

SEMA Supports Legislation to Open Lands Without “Wilderness” Characteristics

SEMA joined with a number of other organizations representing the off-road industry and enthusiasts to support legislation in Congress that would release 42 million acres of land from a wilderness designation. The lands have been set aside as “wilderness study areas” (WSAs) or “inventoried roadless areas.” WSAs are lands that have been identified as having wilderness potential. However, following extensive reviews, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the U.S. Forest Service have identified the 42 million acres included in the legislation as not suitable as wilderness. Mechanized equipment is forbidden on lands designated as wilderness and the federal agencies usually manage WSAs in a restrictive manner pending a final decision on whether to release the land. The legislation directs the agencies to manage the 42 million acres for multiple uses, including motorized recreation.

For more information, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.