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1: Executive Summary

2: About Oil/Gas Leases

3: Oil & Gas Impacts

4: Bush Admin Rollbacks

5: The Spin on Drilling

6: Hotspot: Roan Plateau, CO

7: Hotspot: Otero Mesa, NM

8: Hotspot: Rocky Mtn Front, MT

9: Hotspot: Powder River Basin, WY

10: Hotspot: Book Cliffs, UT

11: Oil, Gas, Political Cash

12: EWG Recommendations

13: Methodology

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Roan Plateau, Colorado

"When you start getting all these oil and gas wells on public land, you lose the people coming here. Will you pay me $2,500 to $3,500 to take you on a hunt when over here's a gas well and over there's a rig? How much do the people of Garfield County have to keep giving?"

— Keith Goddard, hunting and fishing guide in Rifle, Colorado, near Roan Plateau, 2004 (Kenworthy 2004)

Quick Facts: Federal Land in Roan Plateau Area
  • Acres leased near base of Roan Plateau: 13,288
  • Oil in undeveloped Plateau could supply U.S. for: 5.8 hours (EIA Petroleum Products 2002, BLM Roan RFD 2003)
  • Gas in undeveloped Plateau could supply U.S. for: 35 days (U.S. DOE Natural Gas 2004, BLM Roan RFD 2003)


Roan Plateau Interactive Map

Map Note: Entire Roan Plateau area outlined in red depicts 73,000-acres of land on which BLM may allow close to 2,000 oil and gas leases. Top of the Plateau depicts sensitive undeveloped area on which BLM might approve up to 335 of the 2,000 leases (National Atlas 2003, Energy Inventory 2003, Roan Resource Plan 2004).

Drilling Roan Plateau?

For 35 days worth of natural gas and a 5.8-hour supply of oil, the Bureau of Land Management may approve a plan this August that could jeopardize one of the West's natural treasures (U.S. DOE Natural Gas 2004, BLM Roan RFD 2003, EIA Petroleum Products 2002, BLM Roan RFD 2003).

The BLM is expected to complete an environmental impact study in 2004 that could place 335 oil and gas wells on Colorado's spectacular Roan Plateau and more than 1,600 wells adjacent to the Plateau (AP 2004). An Environmental Working Group analysis of government leasing and drilling records shows that the oil and gas industry already pressures local wildlife — a summary of current leasing activity in the Plateau is shown below.