Office of External Affairs
Mountain-Prairie Region

NEWS RELEASE

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mountain-Prairie Region
134 Union Boulevard
Lakewood, Colorado 80228

August 8, 2007

Contact:  Michael Blenden (719)589-4021
                 Ron Garcia (719)256-5527

U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE TO HOST PUBLIC MEETING TO DISCUSS

GAS EXPLORATION ON BACA NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) will hold a public meeting on August 17, 2007 to provide information the about the Service’s efforts to reduce the environmental impacts of gas exploration activities being conducted on the Baca National Wildlife Refuge and to gather information about public concerns related to these activities.  Service staff, Lexam Explorations (USA) Inc., and its contractor will share information, answer questions and take public comments about the exploration activities. 

The Service is initiating an environmental assessment to analyze the standards and measures being proposed by the Service to insure that Lexam’s drilling activities do not unreasonably degrade the Service’s surface estate and related resources.    The public meeting is part of the scoping phase for the environmental assessment.

 

The time, date, and location of the meeting are as follows:

 

Friday, August 17, 2007

5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Baca Grande Property Owners Association Hall

Crestone, Colorado

 

 The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages the 96-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, which encompasses 545 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries, 64 fishery resources offices and 81 ecological services field stations. The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such as wetlands, and helps foreign and Native American tribal governments with their conservation efforts. It also oversees the Federal Assistance program, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment to state fish and wildlife agencies.

- FWS -