The Draft EA

We are all waiting so patiently for Theodore Roosevelt National Park to release their Draft Environmental Assessment (EA).  They have stated that it would be released this fall.  For everyone getting excited that we all just flipped our calendars to September, remember: The Autumn equinox begins on September 23rd AND winter does not officially begin until December 21st

We have A LOT of FALL still to go!

We have heard A LOT of people say:“The park is just dragging their feet on this, hoping we all forget what they are trying to do!”

That is not true.  The park is engaged in a NEPA – National Environmental Policy Act – process.  This is a LONG process! 

This all came about because of their proposed action – The TOTAL elimination of the herd of horses from the  park.  The park’s position HAS NOT CHANGED!  If they DO change their mind, you better believe there will be a press release stating that.  Until we hear otherwise, believe they are staying the course to eliminate the herd. 

What EXACTLY is the Draft EA?

An Environmental Assessment (EA) under (NEPA) is a concise public document that provides sufficient evidence and analysis for determining whether a federal agency should issue a Finding of No Significant Environmental Impact (FONSI) or prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The EA determines whether or not a federal action has the potential to cause significant environmental effects.  

Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates has repeatedly said that the park needs to do an Environmental Impact Statement.

From the EPA website on NEPA (

Generally, the EA includes a brief discussion of:

  • The purpose and need for the proposed action
  • Alternatives (as required by section 102(2)(E) of NEPA)
  • The environmental impacts of the proposed action and alternatives
  • A listing of agencies and persons consulted.

Based on the EA, the following actions can occur:

  • If the agency determines that the action will not have significant environmental impacts, the agency will issue a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI). A FONSI is a document that presents the reasons why the agency has concluded that there are no significant environmental impacts projected to occur upon implementation of the action.
  • If the EA determines that the environmental impacts of a proposed Federal action will be significant, an Environmental Impact Statement is prepared.

The park SHOULD be looking at those 5,000+ unique comments and SHOULD be taking those FACTUAL AND SCIENTIFIC comments they received into consideration as they work on their Draft EA. 

We will NOT know until the Draft EA comes out which options they considered.  They should also address any “REASONABLE” suggestions that they did not consider in their assessment and why they did not consider them. 

THAT is why the last public comment period was sooooo important!  They wanted to know WHAT OTHER ALTERNATIVES they should consider as they move forward with the future management of this herd. 

When the Draft EA comes out, there will be another 30-day public comment period along with another virtual public engagement meeting. 

REMEMBER: The proposed action for Theodore Roosevelt National Park with respect to the wild horses is the TOTAL elimination of the herd.  THAT has not changed!

What HAS changed is the support that has come out for these horses!  THAT support has NOT saved them ~ YET!

Senator John Hoeven has come out strong in support of the horses.  Even his support and all he has done to save them does not change the process the park is engaged in.  Senator Hoeven’s office is waiting PATIENTLY just like the rest of us, for the Draft EA to come out.

Park officials have repeatedly stated that we would have 2 more chances to comment.  Our next opportunity will be when the Draft EA comes out.

It doesn’t matter if you did or did not comment in the last comment period, WE NEED EVERYONE to comment on the Draft EA.  Your comments during this time will be critical for the future of these horses!  Please continue to check our website for information on how to write an effective comment!  We will be working with other wild horse advocate friends and our legal team to give you the best advice possible on how to write an effective public comment.

Until then, please keep talking to everyone you know about these amazing wild horses and their current plight!  There are STILL so many people who do not know!  If you are interested in receiving some of our brochures to pass out, or can help us by volunteering, please send us an email at

We will also be holding a silent auction online at the end of the month!  More details to come!  If you are an individual, business, or artist interested in donating items for our auction, please email us at  The auction items can be ANYTHING you want to donate and CAN BUT DO NOT have to reflect the TRNP herd!

Lastly, please consider making a donation to help support our advocacy work.  Every $1 counts!

Thank you for your support and have a GREAT day!

Chasing Horses Wild Horse Advocates is committed to advocating for a wild horse management plan and protection for these unique wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home!  We are fighting for a management plan that is guided by science especially when it comes to decisions regarding the removal of horses and the administration of birth control.  Many other wild horse management plans have proven to be successful with their science-based plans.  We are asking for the same for this amazing group of wild horses that call Theodore Roosevelt National Park home.

One thought on “The Draft EA

  1. Yes, there’ needs to be an Environmental Impact Statement made not just a cursory Environmental Assessment!

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