Oil & Gas Issues
Oil & Gas Projects
Public lands are big business in the West for gateway businesses that depend on recreation. Oil and gas developments are often prevalent in the same landscapes that boast popular recreation assets. Protecting public lands provides a steady tax base for local governments. By attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors, public lands pump money into the local economy, sustain businesses, and create jobs. If we want to maintain a healthy, thriving, and diverse local economies we have to protect the recreation assets on our public lands. We can protect our public lands that drive a diverse outdoor recreation economy by ensuring oil and gas development occurs in the right places and is done responsibly.
History shows us that extractive industries are subject to commodity price fluctuation and booms and busts. Local communities can’t depend on those jobs over the long run, and some areas are too special to develop and need enhanced protections. Local communities can’t sacrifice their public lands and the health of their economies to poorly planned development proposals. We need to enact policies that can help ensure that both public land resources and tourism economies of local communities are protected. At the same time, the federal land managers can fulfill the mandate to manage public lands for multiple uses, providing oil and gas leases where appropriate and protections for sensitive landscapes, recreation and other uses where drilling is inappropriate.
Today, approximately 25 local businesses sent a letter to the Bureau of Land Management St. George Field Office opposing a plan to sell three oil and gas leases near to Zion National Park. The businesses join a chorus of concern for the leases. Washington County, the City of Springdale, and over 40,000 citizens have also voiced concerns for the proposed lease sale.read more
Reps. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) and Kevin McCarthy (R-California) recently sent a letter to Interior Secretary Sally Jewel calling on her to halt efforts to finalize the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s draft rule that would cut natural gas waste by limiting flaring and venting and ensuring modern technologies are used to address leaky equipment for oil and gas wells on public and tribal lands.read more
This week the Bureau of Land Management hosted open houses in Moab and Monticello to showcase a range of alternatives in their draft Moab Master Leasing Plan (MLP). At these open houses—which were attended by local government officials, members of the recreation community, conservation advocates, industry representatives, and local citizens—the BLM provided an overview of the draft plan, responded to questions, and took public comments.read more