President Donald Trump has asked the U.S. Department of the Interior to delay a planned transfer of an oil field in northwestern Colorado to a company that could help develop the area for oil and gas production.
Trump has repeatedly called for the controversial land transfer, which would involve transferring 1.4 million acres in the western half of the Uintah Basin to a development company in the southern portion of the basin.
The Interior Department says it is still reviewing the request.
The Trump administration has repeatedly pushed for a transfer of oil and natural gas production to the region.
Trump made the request last year, when he asked the Interior Department to expedite the transfer.
The department declined to respond to questions about the request Thursday.
Trump’s request is a significant escalation of efforts to expeditiously transfer oil and mineral rights to the western side of the Basin.
The region, where drilling has not yet begun, has historically had been home to oil and mining companies.
But the Basin was created in the 1970s and oil and minerals were only found there after the 1990s.
The oil and water resources of the area have been largely exploited since the mid-1980s.