BLM Issues Draft EA for Oil & Gas Leasing Near Chaco Canyon

On September 3, 2013, the Bureau of Land Management in Farmington issued its draft Environmental Assessment for the proposed lease sale of federal lands to occur on January 22, 2014. The proposed lease sale includes several tracts of land for proposed oil and gas development that are near Chaco Canyon, a World Heritage Site. The public comment period on the Environmental Assessment runs through October 2, 2013. The BLM consulted with the National Park Service, the Navajo Nation, the Acoma Pueblo, the Hopi Tribe, the Zuni Pueblo, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Chaco Alliance, the San Juan Citizens Alliance, and the New Mexico State Historic Preservation Officer prior to issuing the draft Environmental Assessment. BLM's preferred action regarding the lease of these parcels contains specific protections for Chaco Canyon that are not present in the typical lease. Accordingly, any developers interested in purchasing these leases or commenting on the draft Environmental Assessment should become familiar with these protections. Please click here for a copy of the draft Environmental Assesment.

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Jennifer L. Bradfute
John R. Cooney
Earl E. DeBrine, Jr.
Stan N. Harris
Marte D. Lightstone
Brian K. Nichols
Lynn H. Slade
Walter E. Stern