Colorado: A small portion of roadless area oil & gas leases pulled back

Federal officials say they will correct an oversight that resulted in
13,000 acres of roadless forest land in western Colorado being put up
for bid to oil and gas developers. Regional Forest Service officials
will ask that the proposed energy leases be withdrawn from a Feb. 12
auction. Forest Service spokesman Dave Steinke said Monday that a
formal request will be submitted in early January to the U.S. Bureau
of Land Management, which runs the auction. Environmentalists raised
concerns about the roadless areas after BLM announced that oil and gas
leases would be offered on 133,000 acres, including 96,000 acres of
national forest land. The disputed 13,000 acres are in the Grand Mesa,
Uncompahgre and Gunnison national forests in western Colorado. The
land is also among roughly 4.4 million acres of national forest land
that Colorado wants designated as roadless and made off-limits to most

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