New Mexico

Feds to look closer at oil, gas drilling near Chaco Canyon

10/20/2016

The federal government announced Thursday that it will study the potential effects of drilling on public and tribal lands near Chaco Culture National Historical Park in the San Juan Basin, an area that is one of the state’s largest centers for oil and gas production.

Environmental groups applauded the decision as a meaningful step forward, one that signals the U.S. Interior Department is making an effort to heed their concerns. But some question its relevance, citing the high level of oil and gas development already underway in the area.

Linked to Lynx

10/12/2016
Could New Mexico’s mountains land on the next map for Canada lynx habitat?

Buzzkill: We probably already do have Canada lynx in New Mexico. But a recent Montana District Court decision could mean land managers will need to make more concessions to see them thrive here.

The Canada lynx weighs in at just 14 to 31 pounds, with grizzled gray hair, ears tipped in black fur. Their large paws are ideal for traveling in the deep, powdery snow they and their favorite prey, snowshoe hares, rely on. They make their homes in forests in mosaic stages of growth—dense clusters of young trees and mature multistory stands.

Court allows continued intensive, unstudied fracking in Greater Chaco (News Release 10/27/16)

10/27/2016
Northwest New Mexico oil drilling will continue despite risks to communities, cultural resources and environment

Hopes for a respite from a fracking boom plaguing Navajo and public lands in New Mexico’s Greater Chaco area were thwarted Thursday when the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a federal judge's decision to deny a temporary halt to drilling until a full decision on the merits can be reached. Despite the lack of environmental review or a comprehensive plan for fracking in the area, the Bureau of Land Management will be allowed to continue to grant hundreds or even thousands of new permits to drill and frack the area.

My View: Finally, a smoking gun in New Mexico’s methane ‘hot spot’

8/27/2016

In 2014, New Mexico made national headlines when scientists discovered an atmospheric anomaly above the Four Corners: a 2,500-square-mile cloud of methane (natural gas) — the largest such plume in the nation. At the time, industry data showed that oil and gas development was responsible for 90 percent of the known methane emissions. Nonetheless, for the next two years, the oil and gas industry blamed every other imaginable methane source, refusing to take responsibility for the "hot spot" and its associated health and climate threats.

Thousands Speak out for Climate and Chaco Canyon, Call for Canceling New Mexico Oil and Gas Lease Sale (News Release 9/2/16)

9/02/2016
New Mexicans Demand Obama Administration Protect Public Lands and Communities, Keep Oil and Gas In the Ground

A coalition today called on the Obama Administration to rein in unchecked fracking near Chaco Canyon and abandon its plans to auction off nearly 1,000 acres of public lands to the oil and gas industry in Greater Chaco.

NASA Says Methane "Hot Spot" in New Mexico Linked Directly to Gas Extraction and Coal Mining (News Release 8/15/16)

Study says 250 polluters are responsible for half of the emissions causing the "hot spot"

NASA released a new study today examining what caused a methane "hot spot" to form in New Mexico. This new study of methane emissions generated by the oil and gas industry in the state's San Juan Basin is a major step forward in understanding the causes of New Mexico’s methane “hot spot.” It follows up on a 2014 satellite-based study that initially found the “hot spot,” and sought to identify its specific causes.
 

Fracking Versus Ancient Astronomy in Chaco Canyon

7/13/2016

In what could be a win for consultation, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has postponed an oil and gas lease sale on land near Chaco Canyon so as to consult with the nearly two dozen tribes that hold the region sacred.

Cornered: Mexican wolf management to appease livestock producers may run out the clock on recovery

6/15/2016

A golden eagle crouched against a band of rocks that abuts a cattle pen in the Gila National Forest catches the eye first, causing a pause to look for what’s brought the bird to the ground. The eagle doesn’t linger, disappearing rapidly amid the tops of ponderosas. On the far side of the cowpie-strewn basin, a reddish brown hulk has been draped over a downed tree. Once close enough to see that the cow’s hindquarters have been severed and its bare hip socket writhes with insects, the stench hits. From uphill and upwind, a game trail threading off into the woods appears.

Citizen Groups Challenge Fracking in Santa Fe National Forest (Press Release 5/4/16)

5/04/2016
Legal Push Part of Broader Effort to Safeguard Greater Chaco from Oil and Gas Industry

In a bid to protect New Mexico's water, air, and climate, a coalition of environmental groups filed suit yesterday challenging the Obama administration's plan to allow fracking in the Santa Fe National Forest.

Suit Seeks Public Review of Animal Pelt Exports (News Release 5/4/16)

5/04/2016
Endangered Species Treaty Misused to Facilitate Mass Fur Export

Today, conservation groups filed suit to require open, public review of the impacts of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service’s) export program that facilitates international trade in bobcat and gray wolf pelts, creates more incentive for trapping, and harms wolves, lynx, and other native wildlife.

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