Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced its next steps in the implementation of the Alaska Native Vietnam-era Veterans Land Allotment Program. In response, Audubon Alaska has issued this statement:
We are thrilled to see the Department of Interior recognize the importance of honoring Alaska Native Vietnam-era veterans with their steps toward real tribal consultation and honoring land selections. Alaska's delegation can no longer use our veterans as cover for a Trump-era decision to open millions of acres of public lands to mining, oil and gas development at the cost of rural and Indigenous communities across the state. Too often, our delegation conflates these issues in a simple narrative to placate industry instead of focusing on the details of how to overcome issues and satisfy both land claims and conservation of our waters and lands for all people. We are grateful for new administration leadership that recognizes the important connection between lands, waters, wildlife, and human wellbeing.
Rebecca Sentner, Senior Communications Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org