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Texas city says exploration leases may harm drinking water

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Brenham, Texas, officials are hoping to convince the U.S. Bureau of Land Management not to issue leases to companies for oil and gas exploration around Lake Somerville.

The city council in Brenham, about 80 miles northwest of Houston, passed a resolution this week after multiple attempts at dissuading the federal agency from issuing the leases.

City officials tell the Brenham Banner-Press that they are concerned that oil and gas exploration on the 1,400 acres of federally owned land around the lake could contaminate the city's only source of drinking water for the city's roughly 15,000 residents.

The federal agency has denied previous protests of the leases and plans to move forward pending final decision on appeal filed by the city.

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