Draft RAMP Announcement

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Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by ggorman » Fri Mar 26, 2010 10:01 am

U.S. Department of the Interior
Bureau of Land Management
News Release


For Immediate Release: March 26, 2010 CA-CDD-10-45
Contact: Stephen Razo (951)-697-5217 or David Briery, (951) 697-5220


Public Invited to Comment on Draft Plan for Imperial Sand Dunes

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announces the availability of the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan (RAMP) and Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Today's publication of the notice of availability in the Federal Register initiates the 90-day public comment period which will end June 24, 2010.
Daniel Steward, acting BLM's El Centro Field Manager, said the RAMP/EIS outlines future management of public lands administered by BLM in the 160,000-acre Dunes located in eastern Imperial County. The public assisted BLM in identifying key land use issues in this area through a formal scoping process conducted in 2008.
The draft RAMP/EIS analyzes the environmental impacts of many land management issues, including recreation, renewable energy, and species listed under the Endangered Species Act, including the threatened Peirson's Milk-Vetch. A range of alternatives are analyzed in the RAMP/EIS, including closure of areas designated as critical habitat by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to off-highway vehicle use.
The BLM has scheduled the following public meetings:
Tuesday, April 13th – San Diego, CA
Handlery Hotel
950 Hotel Circle North
San Diego, CA 92108

Wednesday, April 14th – El Centro, CA
Imperial Irrigation District William R. Condit Meeting Room
1285 Broadway
El Centro, CA 92243

Thursday, April 15th – Phoenix, AZ
Mountain Preserve Reception and Conference Center
1431 E. Dunlap Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85020

All meetings will run from 6:00pm – 9:00pm

The draft is available online at http://www.ca.blm.gov/elcentro. Capies are available upon request from the Field Manager, El Centro Field Office, Bureau of Land Management, 1661 S. 4th Street, El Centro, CA 92243 or the BLM California State Office at 2800 Cottage Way, Suite W 1834, Sacramento, CA 95825. Comments can be provided via email to caisdrmp@ca.blm.gov or by mail to the El Centro address above, attention: Carrie Simmons. For further information, please contact Erin Dreyfuss, RAMP team leader at (916) 978-4642.

-BLM-

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Re: Draft Ramp Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Fri Mar 26, 2010 11:42 am

Ok guys, let's go!
ggorman wrote:The draft is available online at http://www.ca.blm.gov/elcentro.
So that you don't have to click around alot, here are some better links:

Click here for Volume 1 of the DRAMP in PDF format.

Click here for Volume 2 of the DRAMP in PDF format.

Click here for DRAMP Maps and DEIS Maps in pdf format.

And if you need Adobe Reader on your computer, you can download it from here.

The final step here is to READ, REVIEW and COMMENT!
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Fri Mar 26, 2010 12:10 pm

There are a total of 8 alternatives proposed as follows (from Volume 1):
The eight alternatives under consideration generally vary by the allowed level of motorized use and extent of preservation of the area's cultural and natural resources.
Alternative 1 is the No Action Alternative, which describes the management conditions prescribed in the 1987 RAMP for the Planning Area.
Alternative 2 describes the continuation of the present management of the Planning Area.
Alternative 3 generally places emphasis on preservation of the Planning Area’s natural and cultural resources through limited public use. It proposes fewer motorized and developed recreation opportunities.
Alternatives 4 through 6 propose a combination of natural processes and active management techniques for recreation and use management. Management under these alternatives includes decisions that are a balance of multiple uses.
Alternative 4 identifies a higher level of preservation and a lower level of motorized use, recreation opportunities, and renewable development than Alternatives 5 and 6.
Alternative 5 identifies a moderate level of preservation and a moderate level of motorized use, recreation opportunities, and renewable development than Alternatives 4 and 6.
Alternative 6 identifies a lower level of preservation and a higher level of motorized use, recreation opportunities, and renewable development than Alternatives 4 and 5.
Alternative 7 generally places an emphasis on consumer-driven uses and the widest array of uses, such as renewable energy, transportation, and utility rights-of-way, and enhanced recreational opportunities (including motorized use). It places a greater emphasis on developed and motorized recreation opportunities and less on remote settings and primitive recreation.
Alternative 8 is the Preferred Alternative, which provides for management of each resource and resource use, and provides for a balance between authorized resource use and the protection and long-term sustainability of sensitive resources. It allows visitation and development within the Planning Area while ensuring that resource protection is not compromised in accordance with the principles of multiple use and sustained yield as mandated by the Federal Land Policy and Management Act. The proposed decisions under this alternative could be identical to those under one of the other alternatives presented or could be a combination of features from several of the other alternatives.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by djw » Fri Mar 26, 2010 1:06 pm

Just got my post card in the mail box.

To receive a CD-ROM:
BLM El Centro Field Office
(760) 337-4400 or
Email: caisdrmp@ca.blm.gov
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Fri Mar 26, 2010 2:58 pm

I spent the last couple hours going through this. Granted I've only looked at maps and read about 8% of volume 1, here's a brief review of what the 8 alternatives offer:

Alternative 1:
Per Map 2-7, all areas of ISDRA (excpept the Wilderness area north of Hwy78) will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy".
Per Map 2-19, almost all of the ISDRA would be Open to OHV use (including currently closed areas), with some small Limited Use areas.

Alternative 2:
Per Map 2-7, all areas of ISDRA (excpept the Wilderness area north of Hwy78) will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy".
Per Map 2-20, All current closures will remain with no new closures added.

Alternative 3:
Per Map 2-8, all areas of ISDRA (excpept the Wilderness area north of Hwy78) will become "Lands NOT Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy".
Per Table ES-1, on Page ES-6, Close camping within Mojave desert tortoise habitat and BLM sensitive species habitat.
Per Map 2-13, massive additional "Resourse Protection Recreation Management Zones" (i.e. closures). All of the current temporary closures, plus some!)

Alternative 4:
Per Maps 2-9, all areas of ISDRA (excpept the Wilderness area north of Hwy78) will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing with No Surface Occupancy".
Per Table ES-1, on Page ES-6, Limit motorized use (within corridors or routes) within Mojave desert tortoise habitat and BLM sensitive species west of the UPRR tracks.
Per Map 2-14, the current temp closure above the Wilderness area remains. Glamis's current central temp closure and about half of the Large closure between North & South go away entirely. Some "Limited Use" areas are introduced in the South Dunes.

Alternative 5:
Per Map 2-10, a large area of Glamis streching from Gecko Road to Wash Road will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy". This looks to me to include Oldsmobile.
Per Map 2-15, the current temp closure above the Wilderness is cut in half. Glamis's current central temp closure and about half of the closure between North & South Dunes go away entirely. Additional new Closure areas are introduced in the South Dunes, including Patton Valley.

Alternative 6:
Per Map 2-10, a large area of Glamis streching from Gecko Road to Wash Road will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy". This looks to me to include Oldsmobile.
Map 2-16, No more Glamis Central or North (of the Wilderness) Closure. The Large closure is reduced by approx 35% (the closure line from Wash 40 to Roadrunner is moved to Wash 40 to make a large square closure area) by removing the triangle in the current closure.

Alternative 7:
Per Map 2-7, all areas of ISDRA (excpept the Wilderness area north of Hwy78) will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy".
Map 2-17, only one closure area would be in the entire ISDRA, a strip along the Western edge of the dunes (in the big dunes) where the current large closure is located.

Alternative 8 (BLM's Preferred Plan):
Per Map 2-11, the fringes of the ISDRA (i.e. West of the Canal and East of the UPRR Tracks) will become "Lands Available for Geothermal Minerals Leasing and Surface Occupancy" and some areas without Surface Occupancy
Map 2-18, a thin strip of closure left North of the Wilderness Area and a thin strip of closure along the Western edge of the dunes (in the big dunes) where the current large closure is indicated. This new closure are between Hwy78 and Hwy 8 is smaller than what is shown in Map 2-18 for Alt 7. A large No Camping area is shown on this map, closing off what looks to be Wash 25 almost to Ogilby from camping.

I don't know much Geothermal activity can happen on a sand dune, but I guess any company who leases that land could put a fence around it and thereby close it, even when it is designated OPEN OHV area. Given such, the Geothermal access granted make Alternatives 1, 2, 4 & 7 undesirable to me.

Forget about Alternative 3, this would be a complete loss for us!

Alternatives 5 grants a large swath of currenlty open Glamis Land to Geothermal, presumably including Oldsmobile (ref Map 2-10). Patton Valley and other areas of the South Dunes are closed. Given the idea that the small central closure is gone, as well as much of the North end of the Large Central Closure (presumably including The Wall).
I can live with Alternative 5, but I don't like it.

Alternatives 6 grants a large swath of currenlty open Glamis Land to Geothermal, presumably including Oldsmobile (ref Map 2-10). Given the idea that the small central closure is gone, as well as much of the North end of the Large Central Closure (presumably including The Wall) I can live with Alternative 6, if we need to compromise.

BLM prefers Alternative 8 and it all looks good until you look at all the camping area that is being lost. Last year you could not camp south of Wash41. This year, the new road only goes to Wash 25, but people are starting to get farther out and camp in W26, W28, etc. I've always thought it would be just a matter of time before people started camping south of Wash25 again. Alternative 8 opens a lot of closed dunes, but it is closing a large (much needed) camping area from Approx Wash 25 almost to Ogilby (plus a small camping closure in the south) and as such, it is a tough pill to swallow!

I'll continue reading, but unless there's an Alternative 9, it looks like my choices will be with either Alternative 6 or 8. :(
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by ChuckZilla » Fri Mar 26, 2010 5:54 pm

Have the alternatives changed since we saw them a year ago or so?
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Mean Green » Fri Mar 26, 2010 6:18 pm

Thanks for getting this info up as soon as it was available. Woodglue, thanks for taking your time to start going through all of this information and comment upon some of the proposals. We know that the CBD is already going through this and preparing for the public comment meetings. I hope that we can be more prepared and show up in force at these venues.

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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Mon Mar 29, 2010 9:25 am

ChuckZilla wrote:Have the alternatives changed since we saw them a year ago or so?
I don't have a copy of those old ones. Sorry.

Mr. Green,
I plan to be at the San Diego meeting. My comments will be submitted in written before the meeting.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by djw » Mon Mar 29, 2010 11:53 am

I have hard copies of:

BLM's Draft RAMP March 2002
BLM's Draft EIS March 2002
Notes and agenda's of the ASA workshops.

I think I have a CDROM of updates, but need to go through my file cabinet.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Sloppyduner » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:22 pm

Woodglue wrote:
ChuckZilla wrote:Have the alternatives changed since we saw them a year ago or so?
I don't have a copy of those old ones. Sorry.
I think Chuck is talking about the alternitive choices that cam out in march 09 Here
http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/elcentro ... dramp.html
What you posted is does look the same as the alternatives we were shown last year.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Mon Mar 29, 2010 12:46 pm

As Sloppy Posted in another thread:
Sloppyduner wrote:So its that time to get comments ready. It was a bit ago when I was talking to people about the best way to word comments. As I remember just putting "that is a bad idea and I dissagree" is NOT the best way to comment. Stating WHY it is bad is a much better way to comment. Also if I remember right a blanket comment isn't the best idea either. What I will wait to do is look over others comments just incase I don't see something that is important to me.

Important thing I DO remember is if you don't comment on it in the public comment period you can not protest it later on. So I want to make sure I get in all the points that matter to me.

I would appreceate a Doc or Jerry, Vince, or another persons, take on "how to make our comment effective."
From the ASA's April 'What's New' e-mail:
It will be appreciated if members taking the initiative to review and prepare valid comments would copy The aSa Board of Directors. Remember, valid comments are those that present BLM with new data or point out flaws in their reasoning or other processes. Venting on an emotional basis will be disregarded by BLM.
And like Sloppy stated, any other input will help us all.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Mon Mar 29, 2010 5:17 pm

Has anyone looked at the 8 things that they are giving us?
It looks real sad to me.
6 or 8 is my fav, but I wish there was a 9. :(
I've been thinking about it alot. My letter will probably go to 8, and asking them to keep the Wash Road Camping open between W25 and W40 with some good reasons.

What do you think about it?
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:05 am

Also, refer to the DRAMP / RAMP Comments thread for additional information about composing your comments.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Wed Mar 31, 2010 1:41 pm

Let's get it together guys!!!
From here:
The BLM seeks public comment on proposed Imperial Dunes Recreation Area management plan
10:00 PM PDT on Tuesday, March 30, 2010

By MARK MUCKENFUSS
The Press-Enterprise

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management has issued a proposed oversight plan for the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area and is seeking public comment.

The draft plan outlines how the 160,000-acre dunes, a popular off-roading area in Imperial County, will be managed.

The plan examines the environmental effects of issues such as recreation, renewable energy and protected species, including the threatened Peirson's milk-vetch. A range of eight alternatives are offered in the draft, including barring off-highway vehicles from areas designated as critical habitat by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Representatives of several off-road organizations said they had not yet had a chance to look at the proposal.

Ileene Anderson, a Los Angeles-based biologist with the Center for Biological Diversity, said her group will be analyzing the draft in detail.

"We definitely will be commenting and watching this process," Anderson said.

The group is concerned about the Peirson's milk-vetch and the flat-tailed horned lizard. Fish and Wildlife is considering whether to list the lizard as endangered, she said.

The reptile tends to live in areas of stabilized dunes, she said. "Some of those areas are very popular for riding dune buggies as well as camping."

A series of public meetings on the draft are scheduled next week.

The public comment period ends June 24. Comments can be submitted via e-mail to caisdrmp@ca.blm.govor by mail to the BLM, 1661 S. 4th Street, El Centro, CA 92243, attention: Carrie Simmons.

Reach Mark Muckenfuss at 951-368-9595 or mmuckenfuss@PE.com
Based upon these comments about camping areas and stabilized dunes, it looks to me like Ileene Anderson and the CBD will be going for the jugular!
A series of public meetings on the draft are scheduled next week.
This is the first I've heard about meetings scheduled for next week. :?
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Woodglue » Wed Mar 31, 2010 1:51 pm

I sent the following e-mail to the Press Enterprise in regards the meetings next week that they are reporting of.
-----Original Message-----
From: Woodglue
To: mmuckenfuss@PE.com
Sent: Wed, Mar 31, 2010 1:55 pm

http://www.pe.com/localnews/sbcounty/st ... 27655.html

Mr. Muckenfuss,
In your above linked article dated Mar30, 2010, you stated the following:
"A series of public meetings on the draft are scheduled next week."

Can you please confirm when and where these meetings will be held. I am fairly in tune with the topic and this is the first I've heard of any meetings next week.
Thank you,
-Mike.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Mean Green » Wed Mar 31, 2010 4:53 pm

Woodglue, I will be at the El Centro Meeting on Wednesday April 14th. If there is anything I can do (other than listen), let me know. On a side note, and I am sure it goes without saying but..... I have had enough with the CBD :evil:,. What is it going to take to stop these people from destroying the one thing that are families love so much?

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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by ChuckZilla » Wed Mar 31, 2010 6:22 pm

Mean Green wrote:Woodglue, I will be at the El Centro Meeting on Wednesday April 14th. If there is anything I can do (other than listen), let me know. On a side note, and I am sure it goes without saying but..... I have had enough with the CBD :evil:,. What is it going to take to stop these people from destroying the one thing that are families love so much?

You want to know what "it" will take to stop the CBD. There is no "it". There is no one thing that will "stop" the CBD. Fighting the people that want to close off-road areas is not a 1 hour episode that will ever "end". I am a member and volunteer of the ASA because, as an off-roader that enjoys the ISDRA, it's the right "side" to be on, win or lose. For me there is no "lose", I will have "Off-Road Org Supporter and Volunteer" written on my headstone, and that is the win for me. How about you? Can I interest you in a life long dedication to a cause that may not have a rosy outcome? I hope so!
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by Mean Green » Wed Mar 31, 2010 11:44 pm

Chuckzilla, as I have stated in my earlier posts, I have sat on the sidelines way too long. I have been duning at the ISDRA since I was 5 years old. I have been a donating/supporting member of the ASA since the beginning. I now understand that it is not enough. I respect what the founders of the ASA have done for the duning community in protecting our rights to ride at the ISDRA. I respect all those that have volunteered their time, money, and resources (not to mention blood, sweat, and tears) to the ASA and the ISDRA. Its time that I got more involved. I just hope I have something to offer. PM Sent.

P.S. Sorry for the meltdown in my last post. I did not mean to disparage anyone who has given so much to fight for our rights against the CBD (that was not my point). I understand that this is a war that will probably never end (at least in my lifetime). Also, sorry I did not mean to hijack this thread at all.

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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by ChuckZilla » Thu Apr 01, 2010 5:44 pm

Mean Green wrote:Chuckzilla, as I have stated in my earlier posts, I have sat on the sidelines way too long. I have been duning at the ISDRA since I was 5 years old. I have been a donating/supporting member of the ASA since the beginning. I now understand that it is not enough. I respect what the founders of the ASA have done for the duning community in protecting our rights to ride at the ISDRA. I respect all those that have volunteered their time, money, and resources (not to mention blood, sweat, and tears) to the ASA and the ISDRA. Its time that I got more involved. I just hope I have something to offer. PM Sent.

P.S. Sorry for the meltdown in my last post. I did not mean to disparage anyone who has given so much to fight for our rights against the CBD (that was not my point). I understand that this is a war that will probably never end (at least in my lifetime). Also, sorry I did not mean to hijack this thread at all.
I apologize if my post was condescending, that wasn't my intention. Thank-you for your support and I hope to work a show or other volunteer duty with you in the future Mean Green, you sound like a stand up guy.
Again, my apologies.
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Re: Draft RAMP Announcement

Post by RobC » Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:03 pm

Wow - these documents are really hard to read, and over 800 pages between the 3 of them. Makes my head hurt. #-o
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