The BLM is also requiring BRC to comply with 13 permit conditions and 50 stipulations. The stipulations relate to matters such as event set-up, signing, security, public safety, resource management, debris removal, fee calculation and payment, and event take-down and clean-up.
“Our number one priority has and continues to be the protection and conservation of natural and cultural resources, as well as safety for the participants and all staffs,” said BLM’s Winnemucca District Manager Gene Seidlitz. “I feel confident the BLM is covering these bases in the 2012 permit and in the environmental assessment.”
The BRC proposal for a five-year permit and participant population level from 58,000 to 70,000 is analyzed in the “Burning Man 2012-2016 Special Recreation Permit Environmental Assessment” (EA). While the EA is valid for five years, authorization for any event during the five-year period is subject to a separate permitting decision. Each permit will be based on the previous year’s performance. The event didn’t meet the population limits of the 2011 permit, so the BLM issued a one-year permit for the 2012 event. The issuance of a multi-year permit for 2013-2016 will be contingent upon Burning Man’s compliance review with the terms and stipulations of the 2012 permit.
The Burning Man event has taken place on about 4,400 acres of public lands on the Black Rock Desert Playa every year but one since 1990. Last year, more than 53,000 people traveled to the remote desert location to participate. The operations take place over a seven-week period starting with fencing the site perimeter the second week of August and concluding in late September with the final site cleanup. The major activities are confined to several weeks in late August and early September associated with final setup, the actual event, and the initial phases of cleanup. During this period, Black Rock City becomes one of the largest cities in Nevada.
As in past years, during the event and in the period immediately before and after it, public use closures to protect the environment, assure public safety, address the concerns of adjacent communities and facilitate administration of the event will be implemented. Access to the playa by the general public will remain readily available, even when closures are in effect. Public closures include restrictions on use of firearms, fireworks, camping and vehicle travel, aircraft landing and all public uses in areas within and immediately adjacent to the permit area.
Permit paperwork is available from the BLM Winnemucca District Office, 5100 E. Winnemucca Blvd., Winnemucca, NV 89445-2921, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, except for federal holidays, and posted online at http://www.blm.gov/nv/st/en/fo/wfo/blm_information/nepa0.html.
For more information, contact Cory Roegner, BLM Black Rock Field Office, at623-1500.