During his first day on the job as Secretary of the Interior, Montana’s Ryan Zinke issued two secretarial orders that made his allegiance to American hunters clear: Secretarial Order 3346 overturning Director’s Order No. 219—which had planned to ban the use of all lead ammunition and fishing tackle on national wildlife refuges by 2022; and Secretarial Order 3347 advancing conservation stewardship, improving game and habitat management and increasing outdoor recreation opportunities by directing bureaus and agencies to immediately identify areas where recreation and fishing can be expanded.
Director's Order 219 had originally raised a furor among sportsmen, after outgoing U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe issued it on Jan. 19, just before leaving office.
“Outdoor recreation is about both our heritage and our economy,” said Zinke, in a Department of the Interior news release. “Between hunting, fishing, motorized recreation, camping and more, the industry generates thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity. Over the past eight years, however, hunting, and recreation enthusiasts have seen trails closed and dramatic decreases in access to public lands across the board. It worries me to think about hunting and fishing becoming activities for the land-owning elite. This package of secretarial orders will expand access for outdoor enthusiasts and also make sure the community's voice is heard.”
NRA has praised Zinke for reversing the ammunition ban, which would have impacted all lands, waters and facilities managed by the USFWS.