Greens call for Salazar’s resignation

Dozens of Environmental Groups and Scientists sign letter asking Obama for Ken Salazar’s Resignation.

Ken Salazar, Secretary of Interior

Ken Salazar, Secretary of Interior

WildEarth Guardians initiated the drive to find signatories to the letter in which a number of conservation groups and scientists have called for the resignation of Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar. Many of the signatories had asked Obama to not appoint him in the first place.

I believe that Ken Salazar has been a disaster for the environment. He has not tackled the corruption in the Minerals Management Service, has done virtually nothing to reform public lands ranching, and has the worst record for protecting endangered species. This all comes on top of the BP Gulf Oil Spill which will forever change the ecology of the Gulf of Mexico and its coastal areas.

I have not seen who all has signed the letter but I have seen the letter floating around for about a week. I do know, however, that Western Watersheds Project (which I am an employee of) and Buffalo Field Campaign (which I am a member of the board) have signed it.

Greens call for Salazar’s resignation.
Juliet Eilperin -Washington Post

Colorado Group Urges Ken Salazar to Stay in Colorado
WildEarth Guardians – Press Release

Interior Science Has Integrity Issues, Inspector General Says

Politics still reigns supreme in the Interior Department

A new report outlines how very little has changed under Obama and Salazar. Science is being ignored and managers manipulate it to support predetermined political outcomes.

In my experience, I would say that the Interior Department under Obama and Salazar is as bad or worse than under Bush and Kempthorne.  Substantial changes need to be made to protect the environment and imperiled species.

It seems that Obama appointed Salazar simply because a westerner is traditionally appointed due to the fact that the West has most of the public lands.  Well, as we can see with the Gulf oil spill and endangered species, there is much more to it than that. A Secretary of Interior needs to have a greater understanding of science rather than a simple understanding of politics and cattle ranching.

Read the rest of this entry »

‘Colorado cabal’ takes Interior’s reins

Dept. of Interior is usually quite unrepresentative of the country, but this is extraordinary-

‘Colorado cabal’ takes Interior’s reins. By NOELLE STRAUB. New York Times.

Still, I’d say its better than the industry-minded bunch Dirk Kempthorne brought in Idaho.

Secretary Salazar will review numerous Kempthorne decisions at Interior

He can undo some with a stroke of a pen. Others could stand or be modified. Some will take years of rule-making-

“Salazar to revisit recent Interior Department actions. The department’s new chief will review many of the energy and environmental decisions made in the waning days of the Bush administration.”  By Jim Tankersley. LA Times.

Bush oil-shale rules to get review. By Mark Jaffe. The Denver Post

Posted in endangered species act, politics, public lands management, Wolves. Tags: , , , . Comments Off on Secretary Salazar will review numerous Kempthorne decisions at Interior

PEER: Interior Department needs new brooms to sweep it clean

Whistleblowers and Reformers Required to Rejuvenate Ravaged Agencies

In response to President-elect Obama’s decision to name rancher Ken Salazar Secretary of the Interior, a selection widely celebrated by extractive industry groups and current Bush Interior head Dirk Kempthorne, grass-roots wildlife, public land, and animal rights activists continue to scratch their heads with dismay.  It’s a bitter pill.

Despite Salazar’s abysmal record, Ralph (and many perhaps wiser than myself) have expressed the need for patience and continued effort pointing to the fact that the transition team’s choices regarding Salazar’s under-secretaries/agency-heads will likely be more important indications of Obama’s actual intent for Change of an Interior Department despoiled by corruption, greed, and extractive industries’ uninhibited will.

Public Employees For Environmental Responsibility has released a list of suggestions to fill these important positions for the transition-team to mull over – a list of “whistleblowers and reformers”, many whose integrity and real ability previously cost them their jobs.

PEER’s Press Release :

Read the rest of this entry »

Post Interior Interview with Grijalva

Too much fight ~ not enough industry.  Three cheers for Grijalva.

Grijalva sizes up why he didn’t get Interior

Congressman, still upbeat, says, ‘I have a good job’

Black-tailed Prairie Dog

Interior Update ~ Salazar: Cows AND Condos and oil & guns in parks & big ag …

The recent rumors that rancher Ken Salazar is a shoe-in at Interior have flipped on its head many of Obama’s most fervent western supporters’ idea of what the President-elect’s campaign promise for big-‘C’ “Change” might mean.  That campaign slogan’s broad-sweeping allegation had many hopeful that a new outlook, an outlook responsive to Obama’s supporters on the ground, might change for western public land and wildlife issues following the President-elect’s sweeping victory.  

Industry reaction to reports indicating Salazar’s favor give some indication as to how much “change” conservationists might expect.  Colo. senator reported as choice for Interior Arizona Daily Star :

“He’s lived off the land all his life. He understands the system that we have to deal with day in and day out and he would understand the most about how to streamline the system and better manage our public lands,” said Bray, [Arizona Cattlemen’s Association] deputy director for government affairs.

Read the rest of this entry »

Wide-Ranging Ethics Scandal Emerges at Interior Dept.

So, is this what “drill, baby drill” means? 😉

As Congress prepares to debate expansion of drilling in taxpayer-owned coastal waters, the Interior Department agency that collects oil and gas royalties has been caught up in a wide-ranging ethics scandal — including allegations of financial self-dealing, accepting gifts from energy companies, cocaine use and sexual misconduct.”

“Wide-Ranging Ethics Scandal Emerges at Interior Dept. By Charlie Savage. New York Times.

more Allred responds to Interior ethics scandal. Boise Weekly.

Stephen Allred is the former Idaho Department of Environmental Quality director. Kempthorne took him to Washington and made him head of the Land, Minerals and Management Bureau