01 Nov BLM Denies SG Interests’ Drilling Request at CHC’s Urging
When we heard SG Interests was moving ahead with plans to drill within its Bull Mountain Unit near McClure Pass, we had to speak up. SG was trying to move forward with development despite the recent BLM announcement that the Bull Mountain Master Development Plan will undergo a full Environmental Impact Statement analysis (an admission by BLM that the existing analysis was lacking) and the impending Resource Management Plan revision for the BLM Uncompahgre Field Office region.
BLM initially stated they would “tier” their required analysis for the 12-89-7 Federal Application for Permit to Drill (APD) to a nearby 16-well development by Gunnison Energy.
CHC wrote a letter (PDF) to the BLM urging them to disapprove of the APD. To approve the APD request without doing the legally required analysis would be like looking the other way by allowing someone to enter a restricted area despite it having a big “off limits” sign.
BLM has now disapproved the 12-89-7 APD request because the analysis for the adjacent project “does not fully cover the proposed action” and “cumulative impacts from air quality and wildlife would make reaching a Finding of No Significant Impact difficult.”
We appreciate that the BLM is recognizing their responsibility to do the legally required analysis before moving forward with development. To drill first and think about it later is exactly the kind of irresponsible oil and gas development CHC is working to prevent.