Roan Plateau, East Fork Canyon
In 2008, the Conservation Alliance funded The Campaign to Save Roan Plateau and their efforts to secure lasting protection for the Roan Plateau's spectacular, undeveloped public lands. For the past four years, The Campaign to Save Roan Plateau, along with other Conservation Alliance grantees including Rocky Mountain Wild and Colorado Mountain Club, have worked with a diverse coalition of sportsmen, wildlife, recreation and conservation organizations, as well as with local governments and citizens, to protect the Roan Plateau from the impacts of natural gas drilling.
Last week a federal judge in Denver handed down a ruling on a lawsuit to protect the top of the Roan Plateau from oil and gas drilling. Judge Marcia Krieger found that the Bureau of Land Management failed to look at all the environmental impacts from opening the top of the Roan Plateau to drilling and failed to consider alternative plans, such as protecting the outstanding natural values on the Roan. This ruling results in the protection of 55,000 acres of public land.
This ruling is a huge success and confirms what conservation organizations and local citizens have been saying all along: the Roan Plateau is a unique and biologically rich place which deserves careful consideration before being compromised by roads, pipelines, and tanker trucks. The Roan Plateau is one of the top biological "hotspots" in Colorado, housing rare wildflowers, great mule deer herds, and one of the last genetically pure strains of Colorado River cutthroat trout. A second look by the BLM before they lease it is a victory for the beautiful wildlife and scenery that grace Colorado's West Slope.
"This is a victory for the people and wildlife of Colorado who value clean water and open space. The BLM now has a chance to go back and fix the problems with this plan to protect these values," said Scott Braden, Conservation Director of the Colorado Mountain Club.