Virtual public meetings for proposed mineral withdrawal
There are three virtual public meetings in January on the proposed mineral withdrawal in the Rainy River Watershed on the Superior National Forest.
The purpose of the meetings is to listen to the public’s concerns and ensure they are addressed in the environmental analysis. The meetings will include a short introduction by agency leadership, followed by a listening session.
Attendees selected in advance will be able to provide verbal comments with a three-minute time limit. Verbal comments, including names, will become an official part of the record.
Each session will accommodate up to 3,000 individual users and will include a phone line option.
If you wish to provide an official comment during one of the meetings, you must pre-register 48 hours in advance of the meeting you plan to attend. Agencies will use a lottery system to randomly select speakers from the list of registrants for each meeting. If you are selected to speak, you will be notified by email from the Forest Service 24 hours in advance of the meeting.
If you do not wish to provide an official comment but would like to access the zoom link, you will also need to register. Each Meeting will also be livestreamed in real-time and accessible on the BLM Eastern States’ Youtube account.
Public meeting schedule
• Wednesday, January 12, 2022, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m., CST, Register by Monday, January 10, 1 p.m. CST: https://blm.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_z0ihp2ikSkSug9QnsaLjag
• Saturday, January 15, 2022, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., CST, Register by Thursday, January 13, 2022 at 10 a.m. CT: https://blm.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_q9OWw5P3TSuvACoQ2o6gnQ
• Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m., CST, Register by Sunday, January 16, 2022 at 5 p.m. CST: https://blm.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_rs2ueUYaQ-CoRO25s2bLqA
On October 20, 2021, the BLM published a notice in the Federal Register initiating a 90-day public comment period on an application from the Forest Service to withdraw 225,378 acres of land from new mineral leasing in the Rainy River Watershed near the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW) for 20 years. The Forest Service submitted the withdrawal application to the Bureau of Land Management, which manages subsurface rights in the Superior National Forest, on September 28, 2021.
Comments will be accepted through January 19, 2022. Comments must be submitted in writing, or electronically to the Bureau of Land Management for consideration.
Comments previously submitted during the 2018 application for withdrawal will be reviewed and considered in the development of the Forest Service’s current environmental analysis.
Comments will be used to determine issues associated with the proposed withdrawal, develop alternatives, determine the scope of analysis, and refine the effects analysis. Comments?are most useful and effective if they refer to a specific activity or example, provide a potential solution, or propose mitigation.?
Comments regarding this withdrawal proposal should be sent to: F. David Radford, Deputy State Director of Geospatial Services, BLM Eastern States Office, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, Virginia 22041; or by email to BLM_ES_Lands@blm.gov.
All comments received (including names and addresses) will become part of the project record and will be available for public inspection.
For more information on the project, please visit the Superior National Forest’s website for additional background on the project and the withdrawal project page.