In this report, The Wilderness Society examines the real price this country is paying for unfettered energy development. It focuses on national forest roadless areas and national monuments administered by the BLM and estimates the actual amount of gas and oil available in these sites. Its findings also include spatial metrics that analyze the road density within Wyoming’s oil and gas fields, demonstrating the high ecological costs of drilling, which fragments wildlife habitat, displaces species, and interrupts breeding and migratory patterns.
This paper was presented at the 69th North American Wildlife and Natural Resources Conference in Spokane, WA, on March 16-20, 2004. The paper examines the energy potential of western public land and the hidden environmental costs from energy extraction, along with the large environmental risks associated with the Bush administration's energy policies.
Authors: Pete Morton, Chris Weller, Janice Thomson, Michelle Haefele, and Nada Culver