In a decision with implications that could ripple across the American West, in response to Guardians’ suit, a federal judge ruled on March 19 that the Bureau of Land Management ignored the climate impacts of selling public lands in Wyoming for fracking. Judge Rudolph Contreras temporarily blocked fracking on 300,000 acres in Wyoming and ordered the Bureau of Land Management to redo its environmental analysis of the sales.
“Given the national, cumulative nature of climate change, considering each individual drilling project in a vacuum deprives the agency and the public of the context necessary to evaluate oil and gas drilling on federal land before irretrievably committing to that drilling,” the judge wrote in his opinion.
The ruling “calls into question the legality of the Trump administration’s entire oil and gas program,” Guardians’ Climate and Energy Program Director, Jeremy Nichols, said in the Washington Post. “This forces them to pull their head out of the sand and look at the bigger picture.”
Read the press release.