Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says the Obama administration plans to reverse a Bush-era policy and make millions of undeveloped acres of land once again eligible for federal wilderness protection.
Salazar announced Thursday that the agency will repeal 2003's so-called "No More Wilderness" policy adopted under former Interior Secretary Gale Norton.
That policy stated that new areas could not be recommended for wilderness protection by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. It also prevented recommended lands from being protected during the review.
Environmental activists have been calling on the Obama administration to set up a plan for protecting potential wilderness areas. Salazar announced Thursday that the agency will resume evaluating lands that could be designated as wilderness areas.