- Associated Press - Thursday, October 20, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - The federal government is withholding two oil and gas leases from Utah conservationist and author Terry Tempest Williams, who purchased them in an attempt to keep them from being drilled.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports (https://bit.ly/2elL7Ja ) the Bureau of Land Management is refunding Tempest Williams and her husband $1,680 for the leases. An agency spokeswoman cited published remarks indicating Tempest Williams has no intention of developing the 1,000 acres of land in Grand County.

The couple says they’re planning to challenge the decision.

Tempest Williams had purchased development rights for the land during a February oil-and-gas lease auction.

A Tuesday letter sent to Tempest Williams from the state BLM office says lease holders must “exercise reasonable diligence” to develop their land. It states the author’s intent to not develop would conflict with that requirement.

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Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, https://www.sltrib.com

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