Federal agency to review test drilling at Colorado quarry

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DENVER (AP) — The federal Bureau of Land Management plans to conduct an environmental assessment of test drilling proposed by the owner of a Colorado limestone quarry seeking to expand the operation, officials said.

Rocky Mountain Resources Industrials Inc. sought an environmental review exemption for five test wells, The Colorado Sun reported.

The company needs to perform the test drilling to assess the viability of expanding its Mid-Continent Limestone Quarry near Glenwood Springs, officials said.

The company will be required to pay for the environmental study that the agency will use to examine the potential impacts to the region’s water resources, bureau officials said.

Communities along the Colorado River have opposed the company’s plan for a major expansion.

Letters to the agency from Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton and community leaders expressed concern that the test drilling could disrupt geothermal flows supporting Glenwood Springs hot springs attractions that are important to the tourism economy.