Which one of Colorado’s treasured landscapes could stage the next chapter of conservation?

Flowing from the top of the Rockies to the Mississippi River, the Arkansas River is one of America’s mighty river systems. Its headwaters make up an ecological wonderland and a recreational hotspot, cutting through rugged canyon country full of hair-raising land features like rock hoodoos and rough crags.

This breathtaking Colorado landscape could be protected for future generations thanks to Planning 2.0, which places an emphasis on landscape-level planning and balancing conservation with other uses. The Wilderness Society worked with our science partners to craft a proposal for an Area of Critical Environmental Concern (a type of protective BLM designation) to incorporate principles of Planning 2.0 and help move public lands conservation into the next chapter.

The Planning 2.0 approach can be thought of like a jigsaw puzzle—it looks at all the puzzle pieces and figures out how each piece interacts and supports each other. It means a holistic approach, which is a good thing for conservation and for management of our public lands.

For the Arkansas River canyon lands, this could be a great opportunity. Public lands here are highly valuable and a number of resources should be protected. The BLM should capitalize on the landscape-level approach to determine these interconnections and how our public lands are being fully protected.

Learn more about Planning 2.0…


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