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Rock Springs Field Office
Release Date: 12/29/15
Contacts: Lauren McKeever    

BLM Rock Springs Signs Bridger Coal Lease Modification Decision

The Bureau of Land Management Rock Springs Field Office announces the availability of the Environmental Assessment (EA), Finding of No Significant Impact, and Decision Record for the Bridger Coal Company Coal Lease Modification. The proposed lease modification lies within the existing Bridger Underground Mine, which is located approximately 35 miles northeast of Rock Springs, Wyoming, in Sweetwater County. Bridger Coal Company applied to modify an existing lease (WYW154595) in order to avoid the bypass of an estimated 738,000 tons of minable federal coal located in a 120.02 acres tract.

Initial public scoping on the modified coal lease was conducted from December 2014 to January 2015. Two sets of public comments were received and used to aid in the development of the EA. The Rock Springs Field Manager’s decision to authorize the lease modification is subject to administrative review through the appeal process as outlined in the Decision Record.

The BLM is responsible for the balanced management of public lands and resources, and their various values, so that they are considered in a combination that will best serve the long-term needs of current and future generations of Americans. The BLM processed that the proposed federal coal lease modification in accordance with regulations at 43 CFR 3432.2.

Those regulations provide for the modification of an existing lease when: 1) the modification serves the interests of the United States; 2) there is no competitive interest in the lands or deposits; and 3) the additional lands or deposits cannot be developed as part of another potential or existing independent operation. Consistent with those regulations, the BLM will receive fair market value from the Bridger Coal Company for lands and coal added to the lease by the proposed modification. The BLM will determine fair market value consistent with its updated Coal Valuation Manual and Handbook, including having its determination independently reviewed by the Department’s Office of Valuation Services.

For more information, contact Ted Inman, Project Manager, at 307-352-0388.

The EA, FONSI, and DR are available at:

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2014, the BLM generated $5.2 billion in receipts from public lands.

Rock Springs Field Office   280 Highway 191 North      Rock Springs, WY 82901  

Last updated: 12-29-2015