JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — A Casper-based energy company has been given permission to explore for oil and natural gas in an area of the Wyoming Range.

The project by True Oil cleared the Bridger-Teton National Forest's approval process, meaning pipeline and road construction, as well as drilling, could begin as early as this year.

District Ranger Don Kranendonk says that certain stipulations have been placed on True Oil to help protect the environment.

The project is unique in that 2009's Wyoming Range Legacy Act generally prohibits any new oil and gas development in the Bridger-Teton's portion of the range. However, the leases in this case date to 1969 and were grandfathered in.

True Oil has held the valid leases since 1982 and has three working wells in the area.