Report: Drilling parcels too close to Utah parks

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Salt Lake City (AP) - A report to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar finds that many oil and gas parcels auctioned off in the final days of the Bush Administration were too close to Utah's National Parks and shouldn't have been sold.

Senior government officials say the report - expected to be released Thursday - found that 47 of the leases were close to wild areas or Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.

Salazar scrapped 77 leases within weeks of taking office but promised to review them.

The findings were described to the Associated Press by senior officials who asked not to be identified because they were speaking ahead of the report's release.

The officials say the remaining 30 leases that Salazar rescinded could go up for sale again because they are in or next to existing oil and gas fields.

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