Last summer, Burning Man Project completed an Environmental Impact Statement with the Bureau of Land Management to cover the next 10 years of permits to hold the Burning Man event in the Black Rock Desert. All of the documentation, including the Final EIS and the Record of Decision, is available here. You did your part to get us through this exhaustive process, submitting hundreds of comments about many of BLM’s unreasonable proposed mitigations. Thanks in large part to your involvement in the process and to our successful track record, we didn’t see dumpsters, concrete barriers, or federal gate security in Black Rock City in 2019.
It is important to note though: our work is not done! What’s in store for future years? We’re here today to give you an update.
In late 2019, BLM provided assurances that we will NOT see dumpsters, concrete barriers, or federal security at the Gate in 2020. While that’s GREAT news for 2020, we still need assurances for future years so that we can ensure the ongoing success of Black Rock City and the sustainability of Burning Man culture. We’ve now entered into an “adaptive management” approach with BLM, where BLM reviews the previous year, discusses the event with Burning Man Project, and monitors Black Rock City again the following year. The plan is that together we’ll decide what solutions will be in place for future years. If something isn’t working or we fail to meet established standards, BLM’s proposed EIS mitigations could still be imposed.
In 2019, we saw your commitment to Leaving No Trace and Civic Responsibility – both in Black Rock City and in our neighboring towns – and coming off a year with the greenest MOOP Map ever, we have to continue doing this amazing work so we can keep calling the Black Rock Desert our home. We know that our environmental values, event operations, and partnerships with Nevada agencies and tribes are more important than ever.
As we come out of winter hibernation and you start having those theme camp planning calls, please take a moment to consider your impact, and think of ways you can help on the road to being carbon negative. Thank you for all that you do, and we can’t wait to see you in the desert!
Top photo by Scott London