Proposed RMP is Inconsistent with State Plans & Policies, Governor Says
“The Colorado way of life is dependent on our public lands and we intend to continue fighting to protect them…Not only are they critical to our culture as a state, but they’re a driving force for our economy. [The Governor’s Consistency Review] lays out concerns with the Plan including local input and we encourage the BLM to closely consider the inconsistencies that Colorado has identified.” -Governor Jared Polis
On September 9, Governor Polis released his consistency review for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Uncompahgre Field Office (UFO) Resource Management Plan (RMP). The review firmly describes that the UFO RMP does not consider impacts to critical water resources, air quality, and methane emissions within the planning area that are important to Gov. Polis and the state of Colorado.
The Governor’s Consistency Review notes several inconsistencies between the BLM’s proposed RMP and state legislation. The proposed RMP estimates a 27% increase in direct greenhouse gas emissions over a ten year planning period, which is in direct contradiction to HB19-1261, which calls for a significant reduction in the State’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The review calls for the RMP to ensure that any oil and gas activities occurring on federal lands in Colorado be in compliance with all State regulations and permitting requirements, including SB19-181 and HB19-1261, and to maintain public participation in all oil and gas activities.
Furthermore, Governor Polis notes inconsistencies with state wildlife plans, including but not limited to the Gunnison Sage-grouse Rangewide Conservation Plan, Uncompahgre Plateau Elk Management Plan, and a recent Executive Order which protects Colorado’s Big Game Winter Range and Migration Corridors. The review asks that the RMP “be revised to incorporate explicitly the goals, objectives, and commitments in … State plans, policies, and agreements.” The review calls for a stipulation to be included in the RMP which would control the densities of permanently constructed facilities, roads and trails to one facility per square mile or less in big game winter range, winter concentration areas, production areas and migration corridors.
Statement from Patrick Dooling, Executive Director of the Western Slope Conservation Center: “We greatly appreciate Governor Polis’ continued efforts to protect our public lands and quality of life on Colorado’s western slope. As the Governor’s Consistency Review points out, the BLM’s proposed Resource Management Plan for the Uncompahgre Field Office is profoundly incompatible with many state policies. The plan runs afoul of the recently enacted SB19-181 and HB19-1261, as well as numerous state wildlife plans. We hope the BLM will listen to the State of Colorado and our local communities and create a plan that better reflects our vision for a more sustainable future for our public lands.”