North Fork Valley gas leases 
should be withdrawn by BLM

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Thanks for the column.  Unfortunately, the BLM only issued an Environmental Assessment and still maintains that its failure to properly consider impacts from oil and gas development in the North Fork in its 1989 plan and EIS is sufficient to lease these lands under it nonetheless today.

Given the many resources at stake, landscape level planning is warranted as a first step to update the badly out-of-date plan.  Certainly an EIS is required at this juncture, given the terribly stale nature of the 1980s RMP, and the prudent course would be for the agency to prioritize finishing its RMP revision that it has been working on for years.  It is unfortunate that the State Director of BLM is taking this course, but the issues that made this a bad idea last winter, makes it a bad idea this winter. 

Protests are due 12/17 and the petition to the White House can be found here

Info is at

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