Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Forest Service nixes permit that would have allowed Colorado River-adjacent oil railway

The U.S. Forest Service has rescinded its approval of plans to build 12 miles of rail through protected Utah woodlands — stopping a large-scale crude oil conveyance project in its tracks.

The 12-mile segment, which would have run through northeastern Utah’s Ashley National Forest, was a key component of the proposed Uinta Basin Railway — an 88-mile stretch of rail that would run alongside the Colorado River.

The project would serve to connect Utah fossil fuel producers to the larger national railway network and ultimately enable these sites to sell their resources to Gulf of Mexico refineries.

But officials across the border in Colorado, as well as environmental groups, have long lambasted the plan — citing potential risks of catastrophic oil spills adjacent to a river that serves as the lifeblood of the U.S. West...more

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