"They may try to undo them, but legally they have to justify that with science and facts — and if they don't they're subject to litigation," said Sharon Buccino, director of the Natural Resources Defense Council's land and wildlife program.
She also said it's unclear how Trump's Justice Department would act on lawsuits involving issues such as public lands and waters.
"Will they, as they should, continue to aggressively defend the actions the government took, or under new leadership will they not really continue to do what is their job?" she said. "You're going to have the environmental community, NRDC and others intervening to ensure the law is followed and those actions are defended."
On the water regulations, the Sierra Club is expecting more efforts by the states to chip away authority from the federal government on water policies. "That will be harder for us to stop, because, I think, a lot of that is executive action," Manuel said.
Several lawsuits have been filed against the U.S. government over the water rule, which broadened protections beyond "navigable waters" to include "adjacent waters" such as streams, creeks and wetlands. A federal court has put the rule on hold due to the ongoing litigation.
Among those who sued the EPA over the rule is Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma attorney general and President-elect Trump's pick to head the agency. In announcing the lawsuit in 2015, Pruitt said the rule would mean "farmers, ranchers, developers, industry and individual property owners will now be subject to the unpredictable, unsound and often byzantine regulatory regime of the EPA."
Meantime, Trump's pick to become Interior secretary — who has oversight over the Bureau of Land Management — is Rep. Ryan Zinke of Montana. The one-term GOP congressman is a Navy SEAL veteran with an undergraduate degree in geology and sits on natural resources and armed services committees.
According to Lane, Zinke and the other Trump team selections "signal a group that's interested in correcting some of the overreach we've seen over the last eight years and charting a course that will allow for a refocus on multiple use, which is really ... what these agencies were chartered to do. It's critical to getting that balance restored in the West."
Lane was asked if his group had met with the Trump transition staff, to which he responded, "We've obviously been trying to keep them up to speed on our priorities where those opportunities have been available."
Finally, another area the ranch and livestock industry wants change or repeal is in what it terms "abuse of the Antiquities Act," a 1906 law passed by Congress that gives the president the authority to create national monuments from public lands or to protect historic or prehistoric structures.
The Antiquities Act was recently used by Obama to declare two new national monuments in the West — Bears Ears National Monument in southeastern Utah and Gold Butte National Monument in southeastern Nevada.
Utah rancher Eliason calls the monument designation "pretty destructive to the livestock and multiple use concept."