Statement on final mineral withdrawal to protect Colorado’s Thompson Divide

Apr 3, 2024

DENVER—The Biden administration today finalized a mineral withdrawal protecting more than 200,000 acres of national public land in Colorado’s Thompson Divide. The 20-year mineral withdrawal will prevent new mining or oil and gas activity in the area, but will not impact existing active leases within the withdrawal boundaries.

The Center for Western Priorities released the following statement from Executive Director Jennifer Rokala:

“Thank you, President Biden, for listening to Colorado voters and protecting the Thompson Divide. Some places are too important and too fragile to drill. Today’s mineral withdrawal concludes a process that began when President Biden protected Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument, and it wouldn’t have happened without the leadership of Senator Michael Bennet, Senator John Hickenlooper, and hundreds of elected and community leaders across the state. This is a proud day for Colorado.”

The withdrawal is supported by a coalition of ranchers, hunters, outdoor enthusiasts, and environmentalists that has been advocating for limiting extractive activities in the Thompson Divide area for over a decade. Over 73,500 public comments were submitted in support of a mineral withdrawal in the Thompson Divide.

Featured image: Thompson Divide by Jon Mullen, courtesy of The Wilderness Society