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Environment & Energy Report

Court Strikes Trump Sage Grouse Plan, Cancels Montana Oil Leases (1)

May 26, 2020, 8:00 PMUpdated: May 26, 2020, 9:20 PM

A Montana federal judge tossed out 440 oil and gas leases in greater sage-grouse habitat in Montana and Wyoming, saying the Bureau of Land Management failed to follow its own plans for protecting the chicken-sized bird.

The decision by the U.S. District Court for the District of Montana was a win for environmental groups including Earthjustice and the Montana Wildlife Federation. The groups had challenged three oil and gas lease sales in 2017 and 2018, including a Wyoming sale which auctioned 159 leases, all in sage-grouse habitat.

The BLM failed to prioritize leasing outside of sage-grouse habitat and failed to...

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