Lawsuit over Thompson Divide drilling dismissed after deal

Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018 2:02 PM

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – A lawsuit challenging the cancellation of oil and gas leases in the Thompson Divide area in western Colorado is over.

U.S. District Judge Robert E. Blackburn dismissed the case last week following a settlement reached earlier this summer between the Bureau of Land Management and energy company SG Interests. The BLM agreed to pay the company $1.5 million for 18 oil and gas leases it canceled in 2016 at the request of a coalition of governments, environmentalists, ranchers and others.

The settlement and dismissal means the leases won’t be developed. However, Wilderness Workshop attorney Peter Hart told the Glenwood Springs Post Independent that opponents need to continue to work to prevent drilling in the area in the White River National Forest that’s prized for its hunting, fishing and grazing.