Suit challenges air-quality study of Roan drilling

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email
Environmental groups challenging a federal plan to increase drilling on western Colorado

A natural gas drilling site sits against the mountains near the small northwest Colorado community of Meeker in this photograph taken on Friday, Oct. 26, 2007. A new report predicts that northwest Colorado's population could double to about 417,000 over the next 30 years because of the energy boom and the number of gas wells could soar to more than 50,000. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Denver (AP) - Environmental groups challenging a federal plan to increase drilling on western Colorado's Roan Plateau say the same air-quality analysis found lacking in oil and gas leases offered in Utah was used to forecast potential impacts of energy development on the plateau.

The groups filed an addition Wednesday to their federal lawsuit saying the Interior Department should look closer at air-quality issues on the Roan Plateau as it has recommended doing with the leases in Utah.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar withdrew 77 oil and gas leases approved late last year by the Bush Administration near some national parks in Utah. The agency will review the leases.

The challenge to the Roan Plateau plan claims the analysis of the potential impact of development was inadequate.

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