News

BLM seeks public comments on parcels in geothermal lease sale in southwestern Utah

Drilling site of FORGE research project in Utah (source: Utah FORGE)
Alexander Richter 18 Sep 2020

The Bureau of Land Management is seeking public comments on 28 parcels covering 67,586 acres in a geothermal lease sale in the Southwest of the State of Utah in the U.S.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Utah/ U.S. proposes to offer 28 parcels, totaling approximately 67,586.69 acres on December 15, 2020. The parcels are located in Iron, Millard and Beaver counties on public lands managed by the BLM’s Cedar City and Fillmore Field Offices. The BLM has initiated a 15-day public comment period on the Determination of NEPA Adequacy (DNA) that ends on Oct 1, 2020. “We encourage public involvement early in this review process; it is an integral part of our evaluation of the proposed lease parcels,” said Deputy State Director for Lands and Minerals, Kent Hoffman. “Comments should identify issues and concerns specific to the parcels being considered.”

Public Comments

To ensure that comments apply to the parcels actually proposed for a lease sale, the BLM encourages the public to submit comments during the official public comment period (as initiated with the release of the DNA here). The BLM does not analyze comments that are not specific to parcels identified in the DNA because they are outside the scope of the proposed action.

View the environmental documents, lists and maps of the parcels, and attached stipulations on the BLM Land Use Planning and NEPA Register (ePlanning) at https://bit.ly/2RuLWja. Public comments on the environmental documents must be submitted electronically via the ePlanning webpage and comments must be received by Oct 1, 2020.

Background

Geothermal leases are for a 10-year period. For each parcel, the bid, rental receipts, and subsequent royalties are disbursed such that 50 percent of the funds are disbursed to the respective state, an additional 25 percent is disbursed to the respective county, and 25 percent remains in the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

The BLM manages public lands for many uses, including sustainable energy development.  In addition, each lease, if issued, contains standard stipulations to protect endangered species and cultural resources and ensures that development is safe and environmentally responsible. After parcels are leased, lessees must submit site-specific proposals for additional in-depth analysis before energy development can begin.

Source: BLM