New Mexico’s Rep. Steve Pearce spreading lies and hysteria

Long time wildlife foe, Pearce spreading lies about protecting lizard and jobs-

Politics and reality clash in New Mexico. Posted on May 1, 2011 by Bob Berwyn. Summit County Citizens Voice.

Although he was out of office for a couple years, newly elected Pearce (R-US Rep)  is up to his old tricks, made meaner for these lean times.

Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says protecting the lizard will cost no jobs, Pearce says it will have a big effect.

My view is these people (Republican office-holders like Pearce) can play around with causing a default on the national debt without worrying about jobs, but they won’t let this get past them  — a lizard versus oil jobs is just too good for rabble rousing to let it pass.

Kiren Suckling executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity called, “Congressman Pearce’s campaign of misinformation and hysteria is a threat to democracy.” A healthy democracy requires good information and trustworthy politicians. When people like Pearce abuse their positions of power and promote hysteria with fear mongering, they undermine the foundation of democracy and civil society.” This is from “Group Calls on New Mexico Congressman to Recant False Statements About Dunes Sagebrush Lizard. News Release.

Forest Service rejects oil, gas leases in the Wyoming Range

Oil and gas development of the Wyoming Mountain Range is very unpopular-

Folks in NW Wyoming are rejoicing that the Bridger-Teton National Forest has announced the rejection of some of  the last of the requested natural gas leases in the Wyoming Mountain Range 20 miles NW of Pinedale (30 miles southeast of Jackson Hole). Forest rejects oil, gas leases in Wyo. Range. “[Forest supervisor] Buchanan follows [former supervisor] Hamilton’s draft, decides against development 35 miles south of Jackson.” By Cory Hatch, Jackson Hole News and Guide.

Wyoming Range Legacy Act of 2009

The beautiful and wildlife rich mountain range’s protection from massive natural gas development has united different kinds of folks in northwestern Wyoming. In August 2009, most of the Wyoming Range and the adjacent Salt River Range (1.2 million acres) were withdrawn by Act of Congress from oil and gas development in the “Wyoming Range Legacy Act,” sponsored by most of Wyoming’s congressional delegation.

The Wyoming Range is still not entirely protected-

This does not mean the mountain range is entirely protected.  Among the very first gas wells developed in the general area were in the foothills of the Wyoming Range way back in the late 1970s at Riley Ridge, which has been massively industrialized.  As proposals to explore multiplied citizens organized to head off massive development of the entire mountainous area along the the Idaho/Wyoming border. Slightly less than 50,000 acres south of Bondurant slipped through — were leased — in the 1990s.

The Noble Basin drilling controversy-

Now PXP Energy wants to drill 136 wells in the area near Boundurant (referred to as the “Noble Basin” area) much to the outrage of local and non-so-local residents. At a hearing in Jackson, Wyoming last week about 98% of the testimony opposed the Noble Basin development. 1/20/11. Noble Basin sparks anger. Jackson Hole Daily. The advantage lies with PXP, however, because the act of leasing public land is the most critical stage of oil and gas development.  That’s because a lease creates a private property right that can only be extinguished by purchasing it back.  PXP’s drilling probably can’t be stopped by any action except public opinion or very restrictive stipulations imposed in the actual drilling.

Citizens can send their comments on regulation of the drilling to the Bridger-Teton National Forest, supervisor Jacqueline Buchanan, P.O. Box 1888, Jackson, WY 83001. Comments can be emailed to comments-intermtn-bridger-teton-big-piney@fs.fed.us with the subject line “Eagle Prospect and Noble Basin MDP DEIS.” The plan is available at http://www.fs.fed.us/r4/btnf/projects/. Comments are due Mar. 10.

Not all opposed to drilling the range-

Of course, the oil and gas industry supports drilling the area as does Wyoming’s lone member of the U.S. House, Republican Cynthia Lummis.  Lummis, while nominally a U.S. Representative, in practice pretty much represents oil rather than the state.

We have posted quite a few articles on protecting the Wyoming Range, but the blog hasn’t shown much interest.

I think this might be because the very name, Wyoming Range, might prompt those not from Wyoming to think the article is about rangeland in Wyoming rather than a large chain of mountains which are full of wildlife, especially elk. The range also has a small and declining bighorn sheep herd that is constantly threatened by disease from domestic sheep grazing. Western Watersheds has been trying to improve the livestock grazing in the area through the organization’s Wyoming Office.

As some have mentioned, it might also be that the area is psychologically hidden because the Tetons, Yellowstone, and the Wind River Mountains immediately come to mind when folks think of the state of Wyoming.

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More information

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Interior Department opening Colorado’s North Park to gas and oil drilling

“Certainly, if we want to supply some of our domestic energy needs, drilling is going to occur in places like this,” BLM spokesman

Interior Department opening Colorado’s North Park to gas and oil drilling. By Bruce Finley. The Denver Post

I can already see that “we” are going to get blamed for the Gulf of Mexico oil fountain. Now we learn that “we” want to sacrifice North Park.

This seems odd. I wasn’t one of those “drill baby drill” people, and I don’t know any of them.  It seems to me the phrase was invented by political organizers designed to be spread from the top down.

In the article above, certified genius Dr. Patty Limerick had this to say “Given our energy habits, and given our inability to change them, we have to go forward with this,” said Patty Limerick, director of the University of Colorado’s Center of the American West, who recently hosted BLM leaders at a forum and is preparing a report to guide conservation initiatives.”

I’ve heard this noted historian speak several times. This is typical. She tends to blame the masses (us). Maybe she should read Howard Zinn’s, A People History of the United States.”

Interior Chief Slams Oil and Gas Groups’ ‘Election-Year Politics’

Salazar condemns oil industry lies about leasing on public lands-

Well good for the Secretary of Interior!

I don’t watch much television, but when I do, I’m amazed at the number of ads energy companies are producing. I’d bet 90% of the population believes that “BP” stands for beyond petroleum, not the company’s actual name — British Petroleum.

Interior Chief Slams Oil and Gas Groups’ ‘Election-Year Politics’.  By Noelle Straub. Greenwire in the New York Times.
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For a great blog on the future of energy, visit the Oil Drum.

I am adding it to my blogroll. RM

Posted in B.L.M., oil and gas, public lands, Wildlife Habitat. Tags: , . Comments Off on Interior Chief Slams Oil and Gas Groups’ ‘Election-Year Politics’

River, Wyoming Range bills move to Senate

River, Wyoming Range bills move to Senate. Jackson Hole News and Guide. By Noah Brenner.

The Wyoming Range bill, sponsored by Wyoming’s Republican senators, would withdraw a big area of scenic, wildlife rich and and unstable soil from oil and gas leasing (contrary to the party’s push to open everything up on public lands).

It should be interesting. The Wyoming Range bill is protected politically to a degree by being part of an omnibus bill.