Enefit American Oil Welcomes BLM’s Decision to Allow Utility Corridor Across Federal Land to Serve Company’s Energy Project
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 26, 2018
Contact: Brian Wilkinson, 801 673 5615, firstname.lastname@example.org
Enefit American Oil Welcomes BLM’s Decision to Allow
Utility Corridor Across Federal Land to Serve Company’s Energy Project
‘Record of Decision’ is Last Step in Six-Year Environmental Review Process
SALT LAKE CITY – Enefit American Oil (EAO) is pleased that – nearly six years after work began on an extensive environmental review – the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued its Record of Decision on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 which will allow the extension of utility lines across a small portion of federal land to serve the company’s planned oil shale project in eastern Utah’s Uintah Basin.
The Record of Decision (ROD) approving the Final Environmental Impact Statement was signed by Joe Balash, the US Interior Department’s Assistant Secretary for Lands and Minerals Management and authorizes a right-of-way-grant allowing Enefit to extend utilities and an access road improvement across BLM land. The agency’s environmental review found that allowing Enefit’s utility corridor would have less environmental impact than other alternatives, such as trucking commodities into and out of the Project site in a remote area of eastern Utah’s Uintah Basin.
“This is a tremendous milestone for our future project and for energy development in Utah and the Mountain West region,” said Enefit CEO Rikki Hrenko-Browning.
“We have worked closely and cooperated fully with the BLM and other federal, state and local agencies since the environmental review process began in late 2012,” Hrenko-Browning added. “Many potential concerns were identified by agencies, interest groups and the public during the process, and we appreciate the BLM’s diligence in determining that these issues can be adequately addressed to allow a right-of-way easement across this federal property.”
While EAO’s energy project would be developed on private property the company owns, industrial-scale utility lines to serve it must either cross federal land or be trucked to the site. In the case of electricity, the inability to connect to a nearby power line would likely require the company to build a power-generating station. The BLM’s analysis found that these alternatives would be more environmentally detrimental than allowing a narrow, 15-mile utility corridor across federal land. The utility corridor will include water and natural gas supply lines, 138-kilovolt electricity lines, road improvements, and an oil product pipeline.
Enefit’s environmental commitment
In addition to providing its complete cooperation to the BLM during the EIS process, EAO has been an active participant in other environmental issues, most notably a Conservation Agreement signed in August 2014 by a wide range of federal, state and local agencies to conserve two sensitive penstemon plants and prevent an endangered species listing. EAO voluntarily set aside more than 1,600 acres of its private property for a penstemon conservation area and is supporting plant surveys and transplantation efforts that are already showing dramatic success.
“Enefit American Oil is well qualified to contribute to Utah’s energy security, create long-term jobs, and help meet community goals,” Hrenko-Browning noted. “Our 30-year track record of producing liquid fuels in an environmentally responsible and economically viable manner demonstrate our commitment to environmental stewardship and desire to work together with our community to develop this project in the most responsible manner possible.”
Visit EnefitUtah.com for more information about the company and its Utah Project.
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