DEAR MEMBERS AND SUPPORTERS,
I have good news to share about the Shoshone National Forest. Last week we received a preliminary decision from the BLM, ensuring—at least for now—that there will be no new drilling on the Shoshone near Dubois.
In April, we filed a “request for state director review” of the BLM’s decision to allow a company to drill Scott Well #2, which would have been the first new well drilled on the forest in more than 20 years.
We echoed the concerns of more than 75 Dubois residents who signed a petition asking the BLM for greater assurances that drilling wouldn’t pollute the town’s drinking water supply.
In response, the BLM issued a stay, which halted surface disturbance that could have begun as early as July 1.
The agency will issue a final decision in the coming weeks or months.
We hope the BLM decides that citizens—especially the people of Dubois—deserve full disclosure of the company’s subsurface disturbance plans, a thorough analysis of the potential threats to drinking water supplies, and a commitment that if drilling operations proceed, there will be required safeguards and adequate oversight. These things were not included in the BLM’s prior analysis.
The area where the drilling would have taken place is a well-loved hunting and recreation area and important elk winter range and spring calving grounds, and is right in the middle of an elk migration route that links the forest to Yellowstone National Park.
We’ll keep you updated when we hear from BLM next. Thanks for your continued support of our national forests.