From Newsroom America:

A federal judge in Detroit has blocked oil and gas exploration near a forest and a river in Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula.

The U.S. Forest Service had given permission to Savoy Energy LP of Traverse City in 2005 to begin exploration, but U.S. District Judge David Lawson ruled Thursday the agency had acted “arbitrarily and capriciously” in doing so.

The proposed wellhead would be located in the Huron-Manistee National Forest. The site is about three-tenths of a mile from the Mason Tract, a 4,679-acre wilderness area prized by anglers and other outdoor recreationists, said reports.

Forest officials said when awarding the contract that the Savoy project wouldn’t significantly damage the area and the company had to keep noise to a minimum.

But Lawson said in his decision the Forest Service didn’t consider how degrading the area could harm tourism. He said further the agency did a “woefully inadequate” job of evaluating how the drilling might affect the Kirtland’s warbler, an endangered songbird that nests in the area.

I wonder if this judge has ever thought about what people use to get to tourist areas, and how they’re supposed to get there without it?

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