For the second time in less than a month, a Denver-based oil and gas firm lost an appeal in its efforts to challenge the loss of three leases in the Mesa County portion of the Thompson Divide.

The Interior Board of Land Appeals issued the decision against WillSource Enterprise Wednesday, following another ruling on related appeal issues May 9 on the same leases. WillSource President Reed Williams previously has said the leases covered some 2,500 acres.

They were eliminated from a seven-lease unit near the headwaters of Divide Creek in the Thompson Divide, an area southwest of Glenwood Springs that activists have sought to keep from undergoing further drilling.

The Bureau of Land Management provides for grouping of leases into units to promote orderly development, with agreements spelling out obligations for drilling in the unit.

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