North Fork Mancos Master Development Plan

By wscc 1 year agoNo Comments

35 new natural gas wells have been proposed for the upper North Fork of the Gunnison watershed, posing significant impacts to local drinking and irrigation water, viewsheds, and wildlife.

Please submit scoping comments to the BLM indicating your concern before the deadline on March 22nd. The public will have the opportunity to provide additional response to the plan, but this is the best opportunity to make sure the BLM fully analyses the possible impacts of this development.

Check out maps created by Rocky Mountain Wild to provide an overview of the proposal and possible impacts to wildlife and other resources.

NFMMDP_Regional Overview

NFMMDP_Game Animals

NFMMDP_Development Context


  • Request the BLM to consider impacts from all potential development associated with the plan, totaling up to 108 wells on 13 pads, rather than the first 35 wells on 5 pads
  • Ask for an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which will provide more thorough analysis of possible impacts, rather than an Environmental Assessment (EA)
  • Ask the BLM to consider cumulative impact from all current and projected oil and gas within the region, including the 146-well Bull Mountain project occurring in the immediate vicinity


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BLM provided this news release upon announcement of the proposal:

Contact: Shannon Borders, BLM Public Affairs Specialist, (970) 240-5399
Lee Ann Loupe, GMUG Public Affairs Specialist, (970) 874-6717
Jan. 18, 2017

BLM and Forest Service seek public comment on natural gas
development proposal north of Paonia

MONTROSE, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests (GMUG) are seeking public comment on a natural gas development proposal about 12 miles north of Paonia, Colo.

Gunnison Energy LLC’s North Fork Mancos Master Development Plan proposes drilling up to 35 horizontal wells from four new well pads and one existing well pad over the next three years. Three new well pads would be on National Forest System lands and one on private. The existing pad is on private land drilling into federal minerals.

The project area is accessed via Gunnison County Road 265. The proposal includes upgrading up to 2.2 miles of roads and construction of up to 4.6 miles of new roads. Total initial surface disturbance associated with the project would be approximately 26 acres on Federal lands and 10 acres on private lands. Of these totals, about 17 acres of Federal lands and 3 acres of private lands would remain disturbed over the long-term. Gunnison Energy estimates the wells could produce 700 billion cubic feet of natural gas over 30 years.

The GMUG and BLM are asking the public to identify comments, concerns and issues before they begin drafting the environmental assessment analyzing this proposal.
“We require companies to provide a multi-year Master Development Plan proposal so that we can better analyze and mitigate potential impacts from oil and gas development,” said Joe Meyer, BLM Southwest District Manager.

“Public involvement is an important part of our analysis of this proposal,” said Scott Armentrout, GMUG Forest Supervisor. “Comments specific to the proposed action will be the most effective.”

The proposal and associated maps are available at or the BLM project website at
Comments need to be received by Feb. 21, 2017.

Written comments and questions should be directed to the Bureau of Land Management, Attn: North Fork Mancos MDP, 2300 River Frontage Road, Silt, CO 81652 or submitted electronically to

Before including your address, phone number, email address or other personal identifying information in your comment, be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

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