The Pinedale Anticline in western Wyoming's Upper Green River Valley harbors significant winter range for world class populations of mule deer, pronghorn and sage grouse, as well as large herds of moose and elk. It also occupies ground zero in the Bush Administration's plan to sacrifice ecologically sensitive public lands to the oil and gas industry.
Speak out now
You have until Friday, April 6, 2007 to make your voice heard.
Please submit comments to:
BLM Pinedale Field Office
Matt Anderson, project manager,
PO Box 768,
Pinedale, WY 82941
or Email: WYMail_PAPA_YRA@blm.gov
You should copy your comments to Wyoming Gov. Dave Freudenthal.
Dear Mr. Anderson,
I understand the Bureau of Land Management has proposed dramatically expanding the level of development on the Pinedale Anticline, which serves as crucial winter habitat for mule deer and pronghorn in the Upper Green River Valley. This project to allow year round drilling of up to 4,400 wells in crucial wildlife habitat could set a dangerous precedent that would legitimize converting BLM's multiple-use lands to single-use industrial zones to the detriment of the public interest.
At a very minimum, the final decision must confine new drilling and road building to only the designated "concentrated development area" that runs north-south down the spine of the Anticline. Rampant drilling has already upset Sublette County's quality of life and stressed community services and infrastructure.
Now is the time to slow down drilling, not speed it up. We know habitat damage from drilling has already contributed to a 46 percent decline in the number of wintering deer on northern portion of the Pinedale Anticline, known as the Mesa. What the BLM is calling a "relaxing" of winter drilling stipulations is really a precedent-setting abandonment of an important measure to protect wildlife. Stronger drilling restrictions must be imposed to reduce impacts on big game and sage grouse and a commitment that BLM will curb activity when defined wildlife thresholds are breached. Without them, an escalation of drilling constitutes a reckless gamble with Wyoming's cherished wildlife.
Projected emissions of air pollution are neither reliable nor acceptable. We need rock-solid guarantees that industry will use the cleanest drilling technology available at the outset of the project. Coupled with the recently approved infill project calling for 3,100 new wells on the neighboring Jonah Field, ramped-up drilling in the Pinedale Anticline could forever upset Sublette County's quality of life, air quality and ability to support abundant wildlife—the very things that make the Upper Green a great place to live and visit.