Burning Man Festival population allowed to grow to 68,000

RENO — The largest outdoor arts festival in North America is about to become bigger.

Federal land managers have issued Burning Man organizers a four-year special recreation permit that allows a peak population of 68,000 on the Northern Nevada desert this year.

Last year, the crowd at the offbeat art and music festival on the Black Rock Desert peaked at more than 53,000 — well below the previous population cap of 60,900.

Gene Seidlitz of the Bureau of Land Management said the agency is requiring organizers to comply with over 60 conditions related to issues such as security, public safety, resource management and cleanup.

He said the agency is confident that sufficient requirements are in place to protect the desert’s environment and to ensure public safety.

Burning Man spokeswoman Megan Miller hailed the BLM’s issuance of the multi-year permit, saying organizers have “always been confident in (their) ability to grow the event safely and sustainably.”


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