Remember that deal the Interior Department struck a few years ago to allow natural energy development on the Western Slope’s Roan Plateau? Interior Secretary Sally Jewell doesn’t.
A dispute over development of federal natural gas leases on the Roan Plateau in western Colorado that were issued in 2008 has been settled, the US Department of the Interior and Colorado state government jointly announced in Denver. The settlement with leaseholders and environmental organizations, which was filed on Nov. 21 (2014) in U.S. Appeals Court for the 10th Circuit, cancels 17 of the 19 leases issued on the plateau in 2008 and refunds $47.6 million in bonus bids and annual rental payments to Bill Barrett Corp. Two remaining leases on top of the plateau and 12 leases at its base will remain in place.
“This is great news for Colorado, and for the local community who has worked hard to strike a balance between protecting open space and energy development,” U.S. Sec. of the Interior Sally Jewell said.
Such were the good old good days. But now she’s back to blaming the Bush administration for the deal she signed off on, and says the decisions weren’t properly considered.
In other words, they want to kill more leases.
U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton made no qualms about where he stands, he “strenuously opposes” changing course from the agreement.
U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet also praised the earlier deal when he wasn’t up for reelection, but now wants some sort of grand compromise, that strikes a better deal for environmentalists.
It’s not clear yet what Jewell is up to, but you can bet it’s designed to help Bennet get reelected and kill energy development.