United for the Thompson Divide!

By Ben Katz 1 year ago

In October, the Biden-Harris administration began the process for an administrative withdrawal for the Thompson Divide, which would close the area to oil and gas leasing and mining for 20 years – a huge step forward!

The Thompson Divide is a spectacular landscape of a quarter of a million acres of public land in western Colorado. Filled with awe-inspiring natural beauty and abundant wildlife, our community has been fighting for its protection for over a decade. The Divide embodies the rural and wild character of western Colorado. It encompasses more than a dozen inventoried roadless areas – one of the densest concentrations in the region – but is threatened with potential oil and gas development and a lack of permanent protection.

With outstanding opportunities for hiking, hunting, fishing, skiing, and a myriad of other recreation activities, as well as public land grazing allotments, the Thompson Divide forms the backbone of the local ranching community. Local governments, ranchers, recreationists, business owners, and community members have worked together in pursuit of protections for the Divide’s dozen watersheds that provide clean water to domestic and agricultural users in Western Colorado. Our ultimate goal is to achieve permanent protections through federal legislation. In the meantime, the proposal to administratively withdraw Thompson Divide will provide strong interim protection–and has our wholehearted support!

Tell the BLM and the USFS: “Unified for Thompson Divide” is a rallying cry that has brought a diverse and bipartisan coalition together, captivating imaginations nationwide. Our community supports the proposed withdrawal. Please move quickly and make this a priority. Deadline is January 13th!

Sunrise peeks over the shoulder of Mt. Sopris as viewed from Huntsman Ridge in Colorado’s Thompson Divide. Photo credit: Jon Mullen
  Public Lands
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