In his State of the Union address, President Obama committed to protecting our air, water and communities, and to conserving America’s pristine outdoor spaces. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell can make this happen by implementing her agenda in 2014 and drawing on lessons from the past.
In a new CWP report—“Secretary Jewell’s Year of Action”—we look at the policy accomplishments of past Interior Secretaries and how their actions can influence the current Interior Secretary.
Former Interior Secretaries have left a lasting mark on American history. Interior Secretary Stewart Udall famously oversaw important protections to new parks and monuments. During his tenure at DOI, Secretary Udall added four national parks, six national monuments, and 56 national wildlife refuges. Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt created the National Landscape Conservation System, a collection of some of the West’s most spectacular landscapes. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Jewell’s immediate predecessor, championed solar energy planning on public lands and guided much-needed oil and gas leasing reforms
Secretary Jewell has spent her first 300 days on the job listening, learning and forming a plan. In her first major policy speech at the National Press Club last October, Secretary Jewell laid out a strong conservation agenda. Now, it’s time for her to apply her skills and impressive resume to implement that agenda.
Secretary Jewell has the unique opportunity to promote balance on our public lands. That means, even as the Interior Department pursues energy development, it’s also making sure we’re conserving our pristine landscapes and restoring impaired lands. By leading the charge to make good on President Obama’s State of the Union commitments, Secretary Jewell will begin building her own place in the history books.