Evan Dreyer, 720.350.8370,
protect the environment and properly pace future development;
Exploring the concept of phased or incremental leasing to increase state revenues, better
Achieving sustainable economic prosperity for local communities and industry;
receives bonus payments from future leasing on the Roan; and
Exploring a possible amendment to the 1997 federal Transfer Act to ensure that the state
“During this period of discussions with the Interior Department, we will continue to actively
engage all those with a stake in the future of the Roan Plateau,” Gov. Ritter said. “This will
include local officials and community leaders, energy industry representatives, conservationists,
sportsmen, state lawmakers and members of Colorado’s congressional delegation.”
Incorporating state-of-the-art technology to minimize environmental disturbance.
STATE OF COLORADO
OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR
136 State Capitol Building
Denver, Colorado 80203
(303) 866 – 2471
(303) 866 – 2003 fax
Bill Ritter, Jr.
Facts about the Roan Plateau
What is the Roan Plateau?
of Denver with significant recoverable natural gas resources.
A federally and privately owned plateau in northwest Colorado about 180 miles west
acres, including surface acres and subsurface mineral rights.
The federally owned portion of the Roan Plateau Planning Area (RPPA) is 73,602
sides and the base.
The federal acreage includes 34,758 acres on top of the Roan and 38,844 acres on the
energy companies and ranchers, own the remaining 42 percent.
The BLM owns 58 percent of the surface of the RPPA and private entities, including
Colorado River at its base.
The Roan Plateau rises to more than 9,200 feet and is 4,000 feet higher than the
of roads and thousands of acres without roads. This includes 157 miles of unpaved
roads on the federal land on top of the Roan.
The Roan includes scenic areas, varied and rich wildlife habitat, more than 200 miles
TCF on the top and 4.7 TCF on the cliffs and below the rim. That is enough natural gas
for Colorado’s 1.5 million residential customers for 34 years.
The recoverable resources are estimated at 8.9 trillion cubic feet (TCF), including 4.2
What’s happening today on the Roan Plateau?
private land on the top.
There are more than 1,300 producing natural gas wells in the RPPA, including 10 on
There are 876 permits to drill new wells, including 161 on the top and 715 on the
On the bottom of the Roan, there are 980 wells on private land and 333 wells on
What is the federal government’s current plan for leasing on the Roan?
be developed over the next 20 years, including 210 wells and 13 drilling pads on the top
of the Roan.
BLM has estimated that under the current plan up to 1,560 wells on 193 well pads would
The BLM would lease the available acres all at once.
bottom) and allow for recovery of 90 percent of the natural gas resources.
The BLM said the management plan will protect 51 percent of the Roan (top, sides and
than 350 acres at a time and wells must be clustered on multi-well pads at least a half
Surface disturbances, including well pads and equipment, would be limited to no more
to 1 percent at any time.
All drilling would be done in phases with well pads clustered to limit surface disturbance
used. Directional drilling is currently used on over 98% of new wells in the Piceance
To access the natural gas resources with a minimum of wells, directional drilling will be
Drilling would not be allowed on slopes with greater than a 20 percent angle.
Geography of the Roan Plateau
pure strains of the Colorado River cutthroat trout, bald and golden eagles, deer, elk,
puma, black bear, peregrine falcon and sage grouse
Four “Areas of Critical Environmental Concern” are home to wildlife such as genetically
The four areas total 21,032 acres:
Anvil Points — 4,955 acres
East Fork of Parachute Creek — 6,571 acres
Magpie — 4,696 acres
# # #
Trapper/Northwater — 4,810 acres
Deb Frazier, 303.866.5887,
STATE, FEDS TO CONTINUE ROAN PLATEAU DISCUSSIONS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Gov. Bill Ritter announced today that his administration and the U.S. Department of the Interior
are engaged in productive discussions about the future of the Roan Plateau and will continue the
dialogue over the coming weeks.
“We are making steady progress on what I believe is a uniquely Colorado solution – a solution
that strikes an important balance and will benefit our environment, economy, communities and
energy industry,” Gov. Ritter said. “I’m pleased that Interior is working with us in reviewing the
environmental, economic and technical issues pertaining to the Roan. I look forward to
continuing these discussions to reach a mutually agreeable means of developing the energy
resources on the Roan while also serving as responsible stewards of Colorado’s future.
“The Roan Plateau is a very special place, and we have only one chance to get it right,” Gov.
Ritter said. “The state and federal governments owe it to present and future generations to do
everything we can to accomplish our goals.” Gov. Ritter said he hopes to achieve several
objectives during the ongoing conversations, including:
THURSDAY, DEC. 20, 2007
the four wildlife-protection zones, known as “Areas of Critical Environmental Concern”;