A week after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit held that the Bureau of Land Management illegally approved dozens of oil and gas drilling permits in Greater Chaco, a coalition representing more than five million members, including Guardians, called on the BLM to pause drilling and leasing in the region.
The Court overturned 25 drilling permits in Chaco, but its holding has direct implications for all drilling and oil and gas leasing where industry is tapping the Mancos shale—a source of natural gas that underlies Chaco and surrounding areas. BLM is continuing to approve new drilling and leasing in the area without analyzing effects on water supplies, community health, air quality, climate, and the cultural integrity of the landscape.
“The court has ruled that the Bureau of Land Management illegally approved drilling in the Greater Chaco Landscape, but the agency continues to permit fracking with abandon, even proposing more aggressive extraction plans for the area and refusing requests for public engagement,” said Guardians’ Rebecca Sobel.
Read the press release.