Please accept my comments on the proposed gas and oil leases in the North Fork Valley regarding the August 2012 sale. I am a farmer in Crawford and plan to live the rest of my life in this beautiful part of the world.
This can only happen if I have clean air, water, and soil to thrive with my family and farm. I support the no action/no leasing alternative that will result in the withdrawal of all 22 parcels and all 30,000 acres in the proposed lease sale.
The 1989 Resource Management Plan did not analyze the impacts of horizontal hydraulic fracturing because this technology did not exist when the plan was written. As a result, BLM must analyze the impacts of horizontal hydraulic fracturing in this EA. BLM cannot put off analyzing the impacts of oil and gas development until some future date. All impacts must be analyzed before selling the right to develop the oil and gas in these parcels. BLM must prepare a more detailed Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Failure to do so would indicate the true apathy and blatant disregard for the people, animals, plants, water, businesses, tourists, and all other activity that thrive in the North Fork of Delta County. Negative impacts to agriculture located in the North Fork Valley are unacceptable and must be fully analyzed prior to leasing.
The EA must include an analysis of the socio-economic impacts to the North Fork Valley. The dangers, which BLM must have overlooked, in regards to hydraulic fracturing threaten the livelihood of my farm and family. The boom and bust nature of gas and oil, which has been evidenced in this state before, could be as economically disastrous as the environmental impact. Well documented accidents, spills, incidents of groundwater contamination, air quality contamination, destruction of roads, death of animals, are all commonplace around and among gas and oil development throughout the state and the country. My community and I are prepared to site specific examples and cases if need be. Without a better understanding of the short term and long term effects of this activity, it is necessary for the BLM to use great discernment and fully understand what is at risk. The BLM will be accountable for their decision, and must make that decision with all of the evidence necessary to do so.
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