Most Colorado Roadless Areas Get Left Out of Obama's Forest Plan

Colorado Forest Facts

  • Acres of national forest lands: 14.5 million
  • Acres of Inventoried Roadless Areas (IRAs): 4.4 million
  • Acres of IRAs identified as suitable for ‘upper tier' protections: 2.8 million
  • Acres of IRAs proposed for ‘upper tier” protections: 560,000

In April, the U.S. Forest Service released a draft of its forest development plan (PDF), which protects only a fraction of the Colorado's 4.4 million acres of roadless national forests. The proposed plan would leave some of the state's best backcountry vulnerable to increased road-building, expanded coal mining and new oil and gas development.

Under the administration's proposal for Colorado's roadless national forests, most roadless areas don't stand to benefit from strict protections. The map shows, in dark green, U.S. National Forests, in light green, Inventoried Roadless Areas within the forests, and in pink, the less than 13 percent of the state's roadless areas that would have top-tier safeguards.

Colorado Roadless Map Key

Colorado Roadless Areas

Download map (PDF)


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