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The environment desk at Aspen Public Radio covers issues in the Roaring Fork Valley and throughout the state of Colorado including water use and quality, impact of recreation, population growth and oil and gas development. APR’s Environment Reporter is Elizabeth Stewart-Severy.

Court: BLM Needs To Consider Climate Impacts In Resource Plan

Earlier this month, a federal judge ruled that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) needs to further analyze climate impacts as it plans for future use of public lands in the Colorado River Valley.


That BLM field office's 2015 Resource Management Plan faced opposition from several environmental groups, including Carbondale-based Wilderness Workshop.


The environmental groups said the BLM's plan did not fully consider and analyze health and climate impacts of oil and gas development, and that the agency did not consider alternatives that would have closed areas to oil and gas development.


That plan provides guidance on how the BLM will manage public lands in the Colorado River Valley Field Office, which includes Pitkin, Eagle, Garfield, Mesa and Routt counties.


In a ruling in U.S. District Court, Judge Lewis T. Babcock said the agency did not analyze downstream or indirect impacts of greenhouse gas pollution from potential drilling in this area. Those indirect impacts are everything that happens after the drilling takes place.


The court also agreed with the environmental groups that the BLM did not fully consider uses other than oil and gas development in this area.

Aspen native Elizabeth Stewart-Severy is excited to be making a return to both the Red Brick, where she attended kindergarten, and the field of journalism. She has spent her entire life playing in the mountains and rivers around Aspen, and is thrilled to be reporting about all things environmental in this special place. She attended the University of Colorado with a Boettcher Scholarship, and graduated as the top student from the School of Journalism in 2006. Her lifelong love of hockey lead to a stint working for the Colorado Avalanche, and she still plays in local leagues and coaches the Aspen Junior Hockey U-19 girls.
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