Landscape Stewardship Certificates of Appreciation - 2013

Don Schramm (center left) of the Public Lands Foundation, presents the Landscape Stewardship Award to Charles Rex (far left) of the Bear River Divide Steering Committee representing cattle interests. Other committee members shown are Mary Thoman (center right) representing sheep interests and Don Lamborn (far right), representing the Mineral industry.

The Public Lands Foundation presents the Bear River Divide Steering Committee with its 2013 Landscape Stewardship Certificate of Appreciation and this Citation.  The Foundation grants this recognition to honor private citizens and organizations that work to advance and sustain community-based stewardship on landscapes that include, in whole or in part, public lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

The Bear River Divide Coordinated Resource Management (CRM) Steering Committee was established in 1993 to resolve some of the issues surrounding the BLM’s management of grazing allotments.  The Committee was composed of representatives from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Bear River Commission, cattle permittees, sheep permittees, wildlife interests, mineral and oil and gas interests, and the BLM.

The Steering Committee meetings were open to the public and two facilitators were employed to conduct the proceedings. No action was approved unless unanimously agreed to by all members of the Committee.

Numerous resource and economic benefits resulted from the Steering Committee efforts, and major range improvement projects have been approved and completed, including six major water pipelines placed on ridge tops to draw cattle off of the riparian areas located along creeks, three prescribed burns covering approximately 30,000 acres, sixty miles of pasture fence, and various spring developments and reservoir re-construction projects.

The long-term benefits of the Steering Committee include increasing the level of trust between the permittees and the BLM, which allows flexibility of management based on resource conditions. This relationship has enabled the team to develop adaptive management techniques which include the ability to respond to weather and market conditions, to use flexibility in grazing schedules to accommodate mid-season vegetation variations and moisture, to increase and establish monitoring data, to change salting patterns to distribute livestock and minimize impacts to an area, to establish a deferred rotation grazing schedule through fencing, to stabilize stocking rates and be flexible to allow for vegetative and economic variations, and to increase funding opportunities.

The team reconvenes regularly to continue work towards meeting proper functioning condition standards and long-term sustainability.

The Public Lands Foundation is pleased to present the Bear River Divide Steering Committee with its 2013 Landscape Stewardship Certificate of Appreciation and this Citation for invaluable contributions to the stewardship of America’s public landscapes.


Edward Shepard
September 13, 2013