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BLM issues final approval for huge Utah oil and gas project

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  • woodzy
    Aug. 2, 2010 4:06 a.m.

    Utah is on the lower end of the 2nd largest natural gas deposit in the world.........if the treehuggers would back off

  • Bill
    July 30, 2010 12:59 p.m.

    Peter..........Good point, folks living on the west slopes of Colorado's rockys are looking west for answers to blowing dust and early run-offs. Your comment on controling air born dust particles is right on.

  • L
    July 30, 2010 12:33 p.m.

    @"Jash | 8:56 a.m. July 30, 2010
    If these lands are truly "public" perhaps decisions regarding their use should be put up for public vote rather than decided by bureaucrats in the BLM.

    Or at least allow the public to put those who make the decisions into office through an electoral vote."

    Jash - great idea BUT
    I would guess that you would be outvoted by other members of the "public" and Utah representatives are outvoted by others. Even if the western states all got together they might be out-voted.

    I think the result has the chance to be good and both sides have agreed to try. A MAJOR accomplishment in my book. Neither got everything they wanted, bot agreed to a more environmentally friendly development than orginally proposed.

    What you have to watch is the next step and see how things work. Will 20 acres be requested for each pad when 5 acres will do etc.. Both are on the "hotseat" including BLM to make it work.

    Oh, by the way Jash, have you calcuated the cost, time, gas, government employees etc. to individually vote on every land use proposal on "public" lands? WOW !!

  • calibilly
    July 30, 2010 11:42 a.m.

    It amazes me how nobody here looks at the history of what the eviromentalist have done to society....just look at California and how they have impacted are economy....farms and orchards dried up because of a smelt fish.....people are out of work because there's no harvest...I once had to take a class on a salamander before I made a dilivery to a job site...there are extremes in all things and once you crack the door extremist like to bull there way through the door and over you...what I'm saying is soon you won't be able to take your dog to the "public" park because extremist believe you shouldn't be there anyway..

  • Bob T
    July 30, 2010 10:59 a.m.

    For Steve Bloch to compare the subject area to the Grand Canyon is like comparing the salt flats to a golf course.
    One possible solution for the rock art would be to build a museum, cut out the art and display it for everyone in a protected environment. What about it SUWA? Quit paying your people the big bucks and fund this project, doing something positive for the first time.

  • hatuletoh
    July 30, 2010 9:43 a.m.

    I think some of the people who've posted about this story are the same ones who let their dogs do their dirty sinful doggy business in the public park and then don't pick up after them. It's a "public" park, and you're part of that "public", so technically it's your park and you can do whatever you want with it, right? Too bad if other members of the "public" want to use it for activities other than a dog restroom--you have every right to use the public space in such a manner that it leaves it in worse shape for the next person.

    At least, that's what the argument sounds like to me when folks decry any environmental concessions from businesses who want to utilize the resources on public land. What in the world is wrong with insisting that a business who is going to profit from harvesting resources on public land not muck it up in the process? We need oil and gas; we also need to take care of the land. The two aren't mutually exclusive except to the most dogmatic and selfish.

  • Jash
    July 30, 2010 8:56 a.m.

    If these lands are truly "public" perhaps decisions regarding their use should be put up for public vote rather than decided by bureaucrats in the BLM.

    Or at least allow the public to put those who make the decisions into office through an electoral vote.

  • peter
    July 30, 2010 8:31 a.m.

    Oh please, they're concerned about the need to control dust contamination. Maybe they should also try to control the dust created by the wind.

  • sherlock holmes
    July 30, 2010 8:05 a.m.

    SUWA is in the crosshairs with this one. If the agreement doesn't hold because of the enviros, the name-calling and litigation is back to stay.

  • Emajor
    July 30, 2010 7:15 a.m.

    Andrew J Marksen:
    What part of compromise do you not understand? The energy development company is happy. The governor is happy. SUWA isn't complaining. New energy wells are going to be drilled. The only people throwing tantrums about this are you and your "ilk", who seem to think that any compromise designed to reduce the damage to natural ecosystems is akin to satanic worship. What is wrong with you?

  • tmoney
    July 30, 2010 7:04 a.m.

    I agree with those that have stated the only group making concessions was the company. This doesn't seem like much of a compromise to me. Barrett is losing out on hundreds of locations, and is going to spend a lot more money in development because they are going to have to do a lot more directional driling. It seem like a huge give in to me. Barrett scaled down just so they could get something done. I think it's okay to make some changes but these changes were huge across the board.

  • jeb
    July 30, 2010 2:35 a.m.

    Hanksboy and Marksen,

    SUWA wanted protections for air, land, water and cultural resources, which is also what the people of Utah, and the world for that matter, should want.

    Look at the photos to see what we would give up if protections weren’t demanded. Do you understand that these ancient rock recordings are one-of-a-kind, and never to be created again by the ancients? Our descendants would be aghast at us if we allowed them to be destroyed.

    Bill Barrett Corp. wants to drill for oil and gas for temporary profit. SUWA wants to protect our priceless heritage forever. They compromised. Be glad.

  • WHAT NOW?
    July 29, 2010 10:38 p.m.

    10:22

    You forgot to blame Obama!

  • Andrew J. Marksen
    July 29, 2010 10:22 p.m.

    This is not over. Despite ANY agreement this will end up incourt thanks to the environmental movement that would strip every last one of us of our freedoms and rights in the name of environmental justice. There can be no true compromise with any environmental group. This article clearly brings to light the tactics used by SUWA and their ilk. Notice they gave nothing up? What were they parting with? What possesion did the put on the table? You can not bargain with these people. This whole project will be held up at some point by a lawsuit.

  • Hanksboy
    July 29, 2010 10:02 p.m.

    Glad this project is finally moving forward but it's kind of too bad that those who so vehemently oppose it will also benefit from it.

  • jeb
    July 29, 2010 8:13 p.m.

    These striking photos show what we have to lose if things don’t go well. Utah has some priceless heritage to care for.

  • MormonDem
    July 29, 2010 7:42 p.m.

    tq2: the SUWA is made up of citizens with every right to a civic voice that you have.

    It's really quite amazing that business and environmental groups reach a mutually-satisfying agreement on this issue, and yet some people are so addicted to antagonism and anger that they insist on stamping their feet and demonizing.

  • Emophiliac
    July 29, 2010 6:58 p.m.

    Well, the hunting panel has been pressure cleaned a few times by some "enthusiastic" employees, so it should look clean. Damaged, maybe, but clean.

    It will be interesting to know if the amount of truck traffic changes as a result of this. That, of course, will reduce the amount of dust in the canyon. And it will be interesting to see if BLM keeps up with checking on what is happening.

  • Arch
    July 29, 2010 6:29 p.m.

    I'm morbidly entertained by the clear dust damage to the primary photo in the gallery. The hunter panel doesn't look too bad at this point, but the panel in the shot with the trucks clearly shows dust damage from the heavy traffic already frequenting those roads. I can guarantee they're not going to fully mitigate the damages from dust no matter what Barret and others say. Also, you notice there weren't any direct quotations from the Nine Mile Coalition or others--just hurrays from those who stand to profit. Ugh. We knew it was coming, but it's still disappointing to see an archaeological treasure known all over the world being put at risk. Still, the smaller number of pads is better than it could have been.

  • tq2
    July 29, 2010 5:55 p.m.

    Nobody cares about the "environment", we're talking about survival here. And who elected SUWA to represent my interests? Who appointed them as relevant to anything in Utah? SUWA is the problem!

  • Emjay
    July 29, 2010 5:03 p.m.

    I'm glad it's going forward. It's past time to get this project going.

  • MormonDem
    July 29, 2010 4:39 p.m.

    Well shucks, this article doesn't give me anyone to demonize at all--not even Obama! NOW what am I going to stew about when I head back to the bunker?

  • Not_Scared
    July 29, 2010 3:14 p.m.

    "Did anyone notice that "compromise" ENTIRELY consists of energy companies giving into "environmental groups" demands?"

    These groups are groups of Americans who what a say in the use of "public" lands that belong to them and not the oil companies. Is stealing a conservative value?

  • Avalanche
    July 29, 2010 2:58 p.m.

    Anti Government... since the environmental groups would probably like to see no drilling, I'd call the fact that they met halfway in between the exact definition of "compromise".

    "but it is always about the money"... yeah, wouldn't drill at all costs be the same thing? All about lowering the cost of energy (money) at the expense of anything else? I guess the environment has no value to anyone.

    As far as campaign "donations" go, I think you have it backwards as to who has more money involved there.

  • Thomas Jefferson
    July 29, 2010 2:39 p.m.

    Tin foil hats for sale. Im looking at you anti. Yours must have lost its effectiveness.

  • Digbads
    July 29, 2010 2:32 p.m.

    I think that art in the pictures is some of the stuff my friend drew in the 1980's at 9 mile. What a laugher. Its even in some text books as "ancient"

  • Anti Government
    July 29, 2010 1:55 p.m.

    Did anyone notice that "comprimise" ENTIRELY consists of energy companies giving into "environmental groups" demands?

    Would anyone else really call this comprimise.

    Our government is bought and paid for AND run by environmental extremists so this is really no surprise.

    Their way or not at all...that pretty much sums it up.

    It is absolutely absurd how much power these wingnuts have been given by politicians that they bribe with millions of campaign donations.

    Now after the agreement is reached there will still be likely 10s of millions if not more of environmental impact studies and provisions/hurdles that still have to be met.

    All of it of course raising the prices of energy that YOU have to pay for.

    Some people have trouble connecting the dots...but it is always about the money. Primarily extracting as much money from you as possible.

    You of course were aware that our current idiot in the whitehouse masquerading as a president is on the record stating that he WANTS "...dramatically higher energy prices"....right?

    Yes, he has lots of great plans for what he can do with your money!!!

  • Geezer
    July 29, 2010 12:33 p.m.

    This is a big change from the notion that they had to be allowed to drill everywhere and build access roads and pipelines no matter what the impact on wildlife and wilderness values. Negotiation and compromise is the way to go!

  • L
    July 29, 2010 12:21 p.m.

    "Steve Bloch, a staff lawyer for the wilderness group, said the lands were as dramatic as Arizona's Grand Canyon.

    "It's a remarkable, awe-inspiring landscape," Bloch said. "The compromise was hard fought, but we're pleased we found a partner in Bill Barrett Corp. to protect this special place."

    A good example of what can be done when people work together. I think things can work, we can have concern for the environment and permit development in appropriate places and with poroper protection and management and compromise.

    Now it comes to the BLM to properly manage and see that things go as planned.

  • lket
    July 29, 2010 11:36 a.m.

    the inportant hting is people are going to work together for all. that the our country should be. this is a clean energy.

  • Not_Scared
    July 29, 2010 11:20 a.m.

    Weren't you told Obama had stopped drilling by the same people who told you Obama was going to take your guns?