For Immediate Release: November 13, 2019
Kelly Fuller, Western Watersheds Project, (928) 322-8449, email@example.com
The Bureau of Land Management has pulled 4,259 acres from a previously-planned Dec. 19 oil and gas lease auction in northern and northwestern Colorado, in response to a court order blocking Trump administration plans that gutted protections for greater sage grouse. The public lands in question provide important habitat for Colorado’s North Park and Northwest Colorado populations of the imperiled greater sage grouse, as well as for hundreds of other species that depend on a healthy and undisturbed sagebrush ecosystem. The Bureau of Land Management’s November 13 action follows a similar decision on November 6 to withdraw 332,247 acres of sage-grouse habitat from a recent oil and gas auction of public lands in Nevada.
“In light of the court order blocking the Trump administration’s 2019 sage-grouse plan amendments, cancelling the Colorado lease auction is the right thing for BLM to do,” said Kelly Fuller, energy and mining campaign director for Western Watersheds Project. “Not leasing sage-grouse habitats for industrial use is a good start, and BLM must also be sure to re-issue grazing leases with the 7-inch grass height objectives needed to provide adequate habitat quality.”