Feds set timeline to decide on Badger-Two Medicine area drilling lease

Two Medicine Lake
Two Medicine Lake

The next chapter begins in the battle over the fate of the Solonex oil and gas lease in the Badger-Two Medicine region. The feds have, uh, decided to make a decision . . .

U.S. government officials plan to decide this fall whether to take steps to lift the suspension of an oil and gas lease on land sacred to Native Americans or to begin the four-month process of canceling it, according to court documents filed Monday.

The timeline for resolving the decades-old suspension of the lease in the Badger-Two Medicine area near Glacier National Park was created after a federal judge ordered the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service to come up with a timeline to complete their review.

Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based Solenex LLC sued to lift the suspension and begin drilling this summer on the 6,200-acre oil and gas lease it acquired in 1982. The suspension has been in place since 1993 while federal officials consider the environmental and cultural impacts.

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