Western Slope Officials Back Rules On Natural Gas Burning

More than two dozen elected officials from western Colorado cities and counties have endorsed a federal crackdown on oil companies that burn off natural gas on public land.

They sent a letter to federal officials Monday saying the practice causes pollution and robs taxpayers of royalties they could have earned on the gas.

The Obama administration proposed new rules last month. The Bureau of Land Management is holding a public meeting on the proposals Monday in Lakewood.

Energy companies frequently burn off vast supplies of natural gas at drilling sites because it doesn't earn as much as oil.

Twenty-six officials signed the letter. They're from Archuleta, Eagle, Gunnison, La Plata, Pitkin, Routt, San Miguel and Summit counties and the communities of Aspen, Basalt, Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, Grand Junction and Paonia.