Michael Bennet


Michael Bennet is a U.S. Senator for Colorado. In 2009 Bennet was appointed to the Senate by Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter, after Ken Salazar became Interior Secretary. Bennet was elected to the Senate in 2010, and again in 2016. He has advocated for maintaining the Methane Rule, protecting the sage grouse, and full funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund. He has criticized the Trump administration’s action to review the Antiquities Act, and opposed the transfer of public lands.

Notable Activities and Statements on Public Lands Policy

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet Advocated Keeping the Methane Rule

Bennet Urged Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to Maintain the Methane Rule “Led by U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) and U.S. Representative Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ-3), Ranking Member on the House Committee on Natural Resources, a group of Western lawmakers sent a letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke urging him to maintain the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 2016 Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, and to listen to Westerners through public hearings and an extended comment period prior to any revision of the rule. ‘Waste of taxpayer-owned natural gas is a significant fiscal issue on public and tribal lands,’ the lawmakers wrote. ‘We call on BLM to address this problem by maintaining the 2016 methane waste rule and by undertaking extensive public outreach in considering any changes to this rule.’” [Press Release, U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, 03/21/18]

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet Advocated for Sage Grouse Protection

Bennet Appealed to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to Maintain Protections for the Sage Grouse. “’The existing sage grouse conservation plans-informed by science and developed through years of cooperation, consultation, and local input-provide a model for efforts to conserve threatened wildlife in the West. Despite this historic effort, the current administration continues to take steps and propose changes that would undermine the integrity of the plans and threaten the sage grouse. The administration should not waste the years of hard work from local governments, state wildlife agencies, governors, ranchers, conservationists, and sportsmen. Instead, they need to work with westerners who want to continue this type of collaboration, and for the conservation plans to stay intact, so the sage-brush ecosystem is conserved and the Greater Sage-grouse avoids an endangered species listing.’  In June, Bennet warned Interior Secretary Zinke of creating uncertainty for Western communities by reviewing sage grouse conservation plans. In May, Bennet sent a letter to Secretary Zinke pressing him to respect local input, recognize years-long collaborative efforts, and effectively implement the conservation plans to prevent an Endangered Species Act listing for the Greater Sage-grouse.” [Press Release, U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, 09/22/17]

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet Called for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LCWF) to Be Fully Funded

Bennet Called for “Full Funding” and Permanent Authorization of LWCF. “Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet joined a bipartisan group of Senators to introduce legislation that permanently authorizes and fully funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which conserves and promotes access to America’s parks, rivers, forests, and public lands. ‘Access to Colorado’s open spaces is critical to our thriving outdoor recreation economy,’ Bennet said. ‘The LWCF has supported hundreds of projects across Colorado, from protecting the Ophir Valley to expanding and improving the Animas River Trail to providing Denver kids with outdoor educational opportunities in their own neighborhoods. Its permanent reauthorization and full funding would ensure that these widely-supported projects continue in the future.’” [Press Release, U.S Senator Michael Bennet, 03/10/17]

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet Criticized President Trump’s Order to Review the Antiquities Act

Bennet Called Trump Monument Action “An Affront to Our Communities.” “Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today released the following statement after President Trump signed an Executive Order to review the Antiquities Act and provide recommendations that could diminish national monuments created by previous presidents: ‘The President’s action is an affront to our communities and tribes that have spent years working to protect areas of cultural and historic significance. It is also an infringement on our rural communities, which rely on National Monuments and other public lands to support their outdoor recreation economy. We will continue to defend these designations in Colorado and the more than 150 additional National Monuments around the country.’” [Press Release, U.S Senator Michael Bennet, 04/26/17]

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet Opposed the Transfer of Public Lands

Bennet and Senate Colleagues Called For “Keeping Public Lands in Public Hands” Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet, along with Senators Jon Tester (D-MT), Tom Udall (D-NM), and Martin Heinrich (D-NM) wrote a letter that stated “Despite high profile attempts to transfer federal lands to states, we firmly believe that keeping public lands in public hands is key to maintaining our western way of life,” (Press Release, 8/12/2016) [Press Release, Michael Bennet-U.S. Senator for Colorado 08/12/16]