Six climate and environmental groups have sued the Trump administration over plans to expand drilling and mining across 1.7 million acres of public lands in southwestern Colorado, Kallanish Energy reports.
The suit was filed against the Bureau of Land Management in U.S. District Court in Denver, Colorado.
The suit alleges that BLM violated federal law by refusing to consider a plan to end new fossil fuel leasing and not analyzing how more oil, natural gas and coal development would harm organic agriculture, the climate and endangered species including the Gunnison sage grouse.
The groups also filed a 60-day notice of intent to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under the federal Endangered Species Act for failing to ensure the sage grouse’s survival in its recent approval of the Uncompahgre land-management plan.
That plan is a 20-year blueprint for nearly 1.7 million acres of public lands in southwestern Colorado. It would allow oil and gas drilling on more than half of that acreage and coal extraction on another 371,000 acres.
The Washington Post recently called southwestern Colorado the No. 1 global warming hot spot in the U.S. where temperatures have already risen by 2 degrees Celsius.
Fossil fuel production on public lands causes nearly 25% of all U.S. climate-change pollution.
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