Spring 2008 brought more good news for efforts to protect federal land along the Rocky Mountain Front. A fourth lease holder, the Kohlman Company out of Billings, agreed to retire its federal mineral leases, thus putting those lands off-limits to future drilling. Removing these existing federal leases is made possible by the bipartisan law enacted in December 2006.
The Kohlman leases were located in the Badger Two-Medicine area, just south of Glacier National Park and west of the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Kohlman joins Questar, Epperson and Alberta Clipper as energy interests choosing to forgo natural gas development on a total of 63,374 acres on the Front in favor of protecting its pristine fish and wildlife habitat, water quality and excellent recreation. All of these leases are being returned to the federal government and can not be re-issued since they are located in the area withdrawn from leasing by the new federal law concerning Front leases.