In May 2006, the National Trust for Historic Preservation released a new study on the Bureau of Land Management, "Cultural Resources on the Bureau of Land Management Public Lands: An Assessment and Needs Analysis". The BLM manages over 261 million acres of federal land, primarily in the eleven western states and Alaska. These lands contain the largest, most diverse and scientifically important body of cultural resources managed by any federal agency. Ranging from prehistoric cliff dwellings, rock art and sacred sites of continuing significance to Native Americans, to historic mining structures and ranches, cultural resources managed by BLM represent the tangible remains of over 13,000 years of human adaptation on the North American continent. Over 263,000 cultural properties have been recorded on BLM land, a fraction of the 4 to 4.5 million estimated to exist. A variety of factors currently threaten these resources, including inadequate information about the location, condition and significance of sites, insufficient funding to identify, evaluate and protect them and activities like oil and gas development and motorized recreation. BLM also faces significant challenges in monitoring and protecting cultural resources from theft, looting, inadvertent destruction and the forces of nature.
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The Preservation Leadership Forum of the National Trust for Historic Preservation is a network of preservation leaders — professionals, students, volunteers, activists, experts — who share the latest ideas, information, and advice, and have access to in-depth preservation resources and training.
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