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Lawsuit Could Challenge Tar Sands Leasing

Seven environmental groups are telling the Bureau of Land Management they plan to sue the agency over its leasing plan for oil shale and tar sands.  They say the agency didn’t consult the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over the possible impact on endangered species.   

Attorney Steve Bloch with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance says the 60-day notice is required before the suit can be filed in federal court.

“Several groups submitted a protest over the final environmental impact statement, again, highlighting the failure to consult, and the BLM stood by its decision that consultation was not necessary," Bloch told KUER.

Bloch says tar sands development could impact four species of fish in the Green and Colorado Rivers as well as the Mexican Spotted Owl and some endangered plants.

The BLM is making more than 12-hundred square miles of public land available in Utah, Colorado and Wyoming for oil shale and tar sands development.

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