Governorís comment on Wyoming Range lease withdrawal
by Governor Freudenthal media release
August 25, 2009
At a remote hunting camp in western Wyoming on (Sunday, August 23, 2009), Gov. Dave Freudenthal took part in a celebration of the Wyoming Range Legacy Act, a landmark bill that withdraws 1.2 million acres of public land in the Wyoming Range from future mineral leasing.
At the event, the Bureau of Land Management announced it will not accept pending bids on 23 oil and gas lease parcels on 23,757 acres in the Wyoming Range Withdrawal Area on the Bridger Teton National Forest managed by the U.S. Forest Service.
Following the celebration, the Governor issued the following statement:
"The success of this bill is a testament to Wyoming folks like Gary Amerine and many others who are more comfortable in the backcountry of the Wyoming Range than sitting behind a microphone in a Senate hearing room. But they did what they had to do and won big things in a place where striped suits and hired lobbyists usually do most of the winning. In 2004, when 170,000 acres were up for lease in the Wyoming Range, we knew that the steep slopes, the streams and the crucial wildlife habitat there was no place for drill rigs. So we set to work and got the offering scaled back from 170,000 to less than 45,000 acres. Today, 5years later, the 45,000 acres has been cut to 21,000 and we're still hoping to get to zero. It took lease protests, letters, phone calls and plane trips - but we're getting there. Had we not acted then - hunters, fishermen, hikers, Governors and Senators - I dare say that the Wyoming Range might look a little different today and a lot different tomorrow. This is a great day for the Wyoming Range and for the hunters, anglers, hikers and many others who came together in their commitment to set this special place aside so our kids and grandkids can enjoy it long after we are all gone."