Horse News

BLM Digs Deeper Into Man-Made Drought

SOURCE:  PPJ Gazette

By Debbie Coffey    Copyright 2013        All Rights Reserved.

During a proclaimed drought across much of the West, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in the Ely District of Nevada is offering up 399,873 acres of public lands for oil & gas lease sales.

This is being done even though “Fracking requires enormous quantities of water.  Estimates put water usage at between 3 and 5 million gallons per fracking of a single well, and each well can be fracked several times.”

The BLM issued an Environmental Assessment (EA) to lease these 399,873 acres June 28, 2013, only a month after issuing an EA to remove wild horses because “there is insufficient vegetation or water to maintain the wild horses’ health and well being.”

If there isn’t enough water for wild horses, how can there possibly be enough water for oil & gas exploration and development? Where is the water going to come from?

The map below shows the oil & gas lease sale parcel areas in red, and some of the wild horse Herd Management Areas (HMAs), including Triple B (Buck-Bald & Butte), Antelope, Maverick-Medicine and Antelope Valley (which includes the Dolly Varden Range).


Now, take a look at these same HMAs below, with the red oil & gas lease sale area, including some of the groundwater basins in blue.


(Even though the red area may look small, there is a potential for a water drawdown and risk of water contamination over the area of the entire groundwater basin.  And, there is inter-flow between basins.)

The map below shows a Grazing Allotment map, along with an outline of the wild horse HMAs and the oil & gas lease areas in red.


Scientific American published an article regarding fracking wastewater wells, stating “Over the past several decades, U.S. industries have injected more than 30 trillion gallons of toxic liquid deep into the earth, using broad expanses of the nation’s geology as an invisible dumping ground.”

Many ranchers have been pushing for the removal of wild horses, seeing them as competition to their grazing interests.  In reality, the ranchers’ biggest competition is, and will be, from water guzzling uses like oil & gas extraction and mining.  If there is less water, there is less forage.

Even during the drought, the BLM is approving the expansion of existing mines and the opening of new mines.

Just one mine in Nevada (Barrick Gold’s Goldstrike Mine) has pumped over 383 BILLION gallons of water from an aquifer. Nearly 10 million gallons of water a day is draining away from the driest state in the nation. (Kirk Johnson, New York Times).

Mining drops the water table and dries up streams and seeps.

In 2010, the BLM gave the green light to the expansion of the Bald Mountain Mine within the Triple B Herd Management Area (HMA), even knowing the mine caused mercury in the watershed and higher levels of arsenic in the surface water.

The U.S. is still using the General Mining Law of 1872.   Senator Harry Reid has been “instrumental in blocking efforts to reform the archaic General Mining Law of 1872, a legal blank check” that “allowed miners to take an estimated $408 billion worth of gold and other hard rock minerals from public lands without paying a single cent in royalties…”

“Before Congress banned the practice in 1994, Toronto-based Barrick Gold paid just $9,765 for 1,950 acres in Nevada that held an estimated $10 billion in gold.”

To make one gold wedding band, about 20 tons of earth must be excavated.  Yet, when the BLM issues an EA to roundup wild horses, they show photos like the one below of the supposed “severe use” of the land by wild horses.


Do you think the BLM ever shows photos of a quarter or a pen next to a big mining pit or next to an oil derrick?

The reason the wild horses are facing dehydration and death right now is because of a man-made drought, caused by the BLM’s mismanagement of public lands.   Uses that make the most money are being fast tracked, no matter what the consequences, even though this is a blatant violation of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act.

“Scientists warned that as the Great Basin’s groundwater is drained, desert springs and seeps will dry up, farms and ranches will wither away, and plants and wildlife will die off.   The aquifer, which took millennia to fill, will run out.”

Soon, there won’t be wild horses left on public lands.  There also won’t be farming, ranching, hunting or fishing.  There just won’t be enough water. This is the “Industrialization of the West.”  Unless you do what you can to stop it.

Send your comments on the proposed lease sale by July 29, 2013 to the Ely District Office, by email to

The Environmental Assessment for the upcoming Dec. 2013 oil & gas lease sale:

To Learn More:

“Is Fracking Behind Contamination of Wyoming Groundwater?”

“The BLM Overlooks Arsenic & Mercury, but Gets Rid of Wild Horses”

“The Mining of our Aquifers”

“Chinese Government Money is Buying on of USA’s Biggest Mines”

“Senator Reid is Working Hard, but for Whom?”


“Harry Reid, Gold Member: Is Our Senator in bed with America’s worst polluter?” by Josh Harkinson (2/24/09) Mother Jones

New York Times “Drier, Tainted Nevada May Be Legacy of Gold Rush” by Kirk Johnson (12/30/05)

34 replies »

    • The law reads: “Section 1752 of title 18, United States Code, is amended to read as follows:
      -`Sec. 1752. Restricted building or grounds

      `(a) Whoever–
      `(1) knowingly enters or remains in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so;
      `(2) knowingly, and with intent to impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions, engages in disorderly or disruptive conduct in, or within such proximity to, any restricted building or grounds when, or so that, such conduct, in fact, impedes or disrupts the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions;
      `(3) knowingly, and with the intent to impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions, obstructs or impedes ingress or egress to or from any restricted building or grounds; or
      `(4) knowingly engages in any act of physical violence against any person or property in any restricted building or grounds;
      or attempts or conspires to do so, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).
      `(b) The punishment for a violation of subsection (a) is–
      `(1) a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than 10 years, or both, if–
      `(A) the person, during and in relation to the offense, uses or carries a deadly or dangerous weapon or firearm; or
      `(B) the offense results in significant bodily injury as defined by section 2118(e)(3); and
      `(2) a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than one year, or both, in any other case.”


      • Thanks for the clarification on this, Robyn. People should also look up their state’s open meeting laws.


    • We don’t have to occupy any specific location to BOYCOTT both the MEAT Industry &, now, the OIL industry until the SAFE Act is passed, wild horses are set free, & they stop fracking our land


  1. This is a very interesting report. Didn’t we or haven’t we said for a long time that the cattle would be next? It didn’t take rocket science to dresser this but it took common sense to see what was happening and thanks to three great advocate work, we saw this coming. Thanks to everybody who has worked so hard to save the mustangs and burros. You ASL deserve a standing ovation!


  2. It is never going to end. Politics and politicians have become so corrupted nothing can be done to rein them in. They have gerrymandered themselves into lifelong positions and if they do lose that job, they become lobbyists. Their appointees are much like they are. Sally Jewell and big oil. Ken Salazar and the cattle associations. It is just one big clusterf**k and horses are paying the price. Wild ones being held in captivity and domestic ones being sent to slaughter.


    • You’re so right Tim…
      Our Wild Horses are suffering from all this Corruption…
      I had a picture come through my Facebook from Palomino PVC one of the
      horses pawing at the photographer at the fence he “WANTS OUT”.
      It gave me Goosebumps of emotions and anger about the H@ll their in and to see how he’s communicating to us and we can’t let him free.


      • Hey Robyn….it wasnt any better when we went out there on Sunday…but BLM wants a public workshop with the Reno Community…lets bring on the national news!!!!


      • Dear Robyn, It turns my stomach how we have watch this HORROR , and I cannot do a thing to help them , that Mustang was expressing he needs and wants out and wants to go home , OMG,it tears me up inside , How i want to take them home to the Range ,,,,, How I wish them Free again ! !! Why cant we find a way !!!!!! There Freedom is so important to them !!!!!


      • Arlene that Wild Mustang and his pawing to the photographer, has sat in my head ever since.
        This is an Impact emotionally knowing they are communicating for help to be set FREE!!! Kills me!!
        I believe that was Jetara that photographed that picture.
        She goes there to check on them and send them Blessings!!


      • Robyn.these comments are well and good and it is great to have this dialouge going…but we sit in our air conditioned homes writing these posts back and forth..but what really is being done to help these beautiful horses…. as with what happened with Jetera, the same happened to me..I had this one horse looking at me saying please tell your people you are talking to we need help and we need it now…I brought it to KTVN Reno…that brought tons of comments from people all over being basically pissed off at what the BLM is doing…well they are trying a public workshop…why??? cause they got caught with their pants down with the pictures I took and that aired on KTVN…so now with that said what are WE gonna do to help these horses…I keep saying bring on the national news…go to CNN and every other news network…I sent one simple email with 9 pictures attached and it stirred the horse manure…Here we have the advocate groups that couldnt do with what me, a private citizen ,who doesnt own horses, to see there was something definitely wrong…this is NOT my story..I dont want the credit at all…this is THE HORSES STORY and what I did with KTVN news is just that…THE HORSES STORY…so come on people lets get it together and do something good for the horses…we are thier voice and they are counting on US……


      • Nancy I agree with you and think it’s Great you did this for our Wild Horses.
        Jetara is part of the Advocates “Wild Horse Protection Act”.
        She put together a Rally and it aired on TV? She is doing a lot for them?
        Where is everybody else? Good Question?


  3. Flabbergasted – but not surprised. This article clearly shows the stealing of wild horse and burro public land for the sake of big $ international corporations.

    I just read this morning that the BLM states they have taken 15,000 gallons of water to the horses so far this year – that is less than 4 water truck loads. And how much of our water have they sent/given/sold to Barricks’ Mine? 383,000,000,000 gallons?

    To me it shows the BLM conspiracy with the big international corporations to steal the public land and water and then to starve and dehydrate (kill) our wildlife.

    It’s as clear as the nose on my face.

    I will be commenting on this fleecing of the American public as you said above. I only wish I knew it was not going to be tossed into the “round-file” in favor or $$$ but going to do it anyway!


  4. OK so here’s the deal…everyone start playing their state LOTTO and don’t forget the Power Ball! We make an agreement amongst ourselves that should we win we will sue the shi*t out of the BLM. This is tragic. Now more than ever we have to get to Sally Jewell and let her know we mean business. Either she needs to fix the problem of get the hell out!


    • You are so right Steve. I’m POWER BALL BOUND !!! Something has to be done to make them sit up and take notice, THAT WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH !!! LEAVE OUR WILD MUSTANGS,BURRO AND DOMESTIC HORSES ALONE !!!


    • Oh, I couldn’t agree more!! For the sake of our wild horses now and their future, we must do whatever we can to help regain their freedom. With the truth unfolding, it’s very obvious their lack of respect for our horses, our land and the American people’s right to protect them is becoming very clear and quite alarming. You can be sure, if I win the lottery, it will be used to benefit our beautiful and innocent wild horses,wherever they are! We simply must continue to do whatever we can to rightfully protect our lands and all its’ inhabitants.


  5. Sickening, but not surprising.

    Makes me not only ashamed of being an American, but of being a member of the human species….just disgusting, but keep up the excellent work Ms Coffey (your phone records been subpoenaed yet…or just hear “clicks” on your phone lines?).

    Who helped you with those overlays?!?! They are awesome!!!!!!!


  6. Hey, I can simulate that quarter picture myself in two ways, one I can take a quarter to my cattle pasture and its the same height, but I am smart enough to take the cattle off the grazed pastures and move then to pasture with growth unlike BLM welfare ranchers who NEVER give the land a rest. I can take the quarter picture and it look exactly the same if I pull the grass tips off with my bare hands, set a quarter next to it and “claim” the horses did it. Never ceases to amaze me-one photograph of a starving horse the pro-slaughter nuts put online recently just killed me, we found that EXACT photograph in a case file from over 12 years ago in a closed rescue. How they got the photo to use recently and claim the pic was current, the previous party who had the “rescue” was a kill buyer! Now how’s that for running around the tree. When I saw the pic online I thought wow! That looks like the same exact place where a horse that had the exact same paint markings died, thought about it a week, dug deep in the files and photos and walla-dated pics of the exact horse, the markings on paints are distinctive, the exact position he lay in and the other horses around him, So when I see this quarter picture it makes me envision the BLM expert taking the quarter, then pulling off grass tips and taking the photo-cause look at the grass tips, remember this is in the full sun, so if the tips were eaten by a horse they wouldn’t be that light and green in fact the tips would be crimpled from recent pulling tips off. Those are recent green shoots with the fine points on the top. Please, they have to come up with better proof. As well, this even could be someone’s pasture anywhere in the Western States, because there is NO background verifying location. Sorry, I am shutter=bug so I just can’t imagine what they were thinking with this ridiculous non-factual picture-someone needs to publicly dispute the validity of the photo. These people have just gone off the deep end!


  7. Debbie,

    This is a great article and very timely. It is timely because it is possible for us to get ahead of the curvie on this rather than viewing the damage after it has been done. Those of you who live in the states where these businesses are located need to try to find out the names of these businesses through the states’ departments of natural resources, minerals, commerce or which ever departments your state grants permits from. If the companies themselves are on federal lands, this might require relying on the Department of Interior. However, it is also possible that your county commissioners and elected state officials know who these businesses are. They may or may not be able to or willing to share this information. It is also possible that the state’s department of agriculture may be aware of where businesses are located since farmers are affected by interests that compete for natural resources.

    Keep this important fact in mind. Our wild horses and burros are native to this continent. The greatest number of fossils found anywhere in the world are found in the Great Basin area of the West. Paleoanthropologists believe that when the rivers were running the horses naturally gravitated to this area because the forage, water, and other aspects of the arid, wind-swept habitat suited them so perfectly. Therefore, attempts to remove them on the fraud that they are non-native invasive feral pest is scientific fraud. There is no reason that these animals and other interests cannot co-exist together in the same place except that the BLM,FWS, FS, NPS all know that the current policies their agencies are following is not about preserving them, but eradicating them. With this in mind, of course, the first species to go regardless of how much or how little harm they are doing is going to be the horse per Article 8 (h) 1992 UN CBD now posted on the U.S.D.A. web site.

    We are not only fighting our government, we are fighting fraudulent science thanks to Al Gore’s land grabbing climate scheme which originated nowhere other than Cambridge, Massachusetts, in the 1960s. Take UN out of it. Call it Harvard Agenda 21.


  8. You put together your complaint and pushed it through and got results..This aired
    on tv with an interview with Jeb at the PVC location in Nevada.


  9. Nancy when you go to the source get evidence and do something with it, seems to make a
    Why do people take pictures if you don’t have the GUTS to do something about it??


  10. Nancy I am open for many ideas with you and have been brainstorming myself… The
    Mustangs need people who are willing to ROCK the BOAT and raise a SNIT FIT!! Our
    Wild Horses are getting desperate living in stagnation. Their health and state of mind is
    being affected by the horrible environment…


    • I agree Robyn…I love the info here its great…but is it just info??…I would like to see what people actually have done?….instead of sitting on the computers and writing blogs?? what is tht doing for the horses….


  11. Hello People:
    This just came on the news. If you would like me to present your comments reply here if its ok with RT or here is my email,

    BLM to hold workshop on wild horse comfort
    Updated: 4:46 pm

    RENO, Nev. (AP) — The Bureau of Land Management wants to brainstorm with the public on how to improve the comfort of wild horses and burros at the agency’s Palomino Valley adoption center.

    Horse advocates have criticized the federal agency for the lack of shade and shelter at the facility 20 miles north of Reno. They claim at least three horses may have died during a recent heat wave that brought triple-digit temperatures for several days.

    The agency this summer did install a sprinkler system for the animals.

    A workshop is scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Aug. 6 at Reno City Hall.

    Tours of the Palomino Valley National Wild Horse and Burro Center will be conducted that afternoon from 2-4.


    • Anyone that is able to attend the meeting can tell them what they tell us:

      “You must provide shelter from inclement weather and temperature extremes for your adopted wild horse or burro. Shelters must be a two-sided structure with a roof, well-drained, adequately ventilated, and accessible to the animal(s). The two sides need to block the prevailing winds and need to protect the major part of the bodies of the horse or burro.”

      Click to access adoption_requirements.pdf


      • Yep Granmagregg that is exactly what I plan on telling them along with showing them my pictures that aired on the news….they got caught with thier pants down….


      • Nancy,
        We need lots of ideas for the BLM to better the living arrangements currently at Palomino.

        I do not believe these horses will see Freedom as they know it. The Fracking, Welfare
        cattle & sheep, along with Mining will take priority for some time, years to come.

        We need ideas and solutions to benefit the Wild Horses in LTC that are in stagnation of
        “No Future” going beyond the needed shade and more water tanks.


      • Robyn
        I just saw another article about this on the station that actually aired the Horses Story.
        It will also be a webinar so anyone can sign up and attend via the web. So I am counting on everyone who has responded to all these posts about the Palomino Valley Center (PVC) to attend via the web.
        Here is the news story that aired on KTVN Reno today:

        BLM to Hold Workshop on Wild Horse Comfort
        Posted: Jul 30, 2013 1:52 PM PDT Updated: Jul 30, 2013 2:07 PM PDT
        The Bureau of Land Management wants to brainstorm with the public on how to improve the comfort of wild horses and burros at the agency’s Palomino Valley adoption center.

        Horse advocates have criticized the federal agency for the lack of shade and shelter at the facility 20 miles north of Reno. They claim at least three horses may have died during a recent heat wave that brought triple-digit temperatures for several days.

        The agency this summer did install a sprinkler system for the animals.

        A workshop is scheduled from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Aug. 6 at Reno City Hall.

        Tours of the Palomino Valley National Wild Horse and Burro Center will be conducted that afternoon from 2-4.

        RVSP for the workshop and PVC tour, either online at: or by calling the BLM at 866-468-7826.
        For additional information and meeting materials, go to:

        In response to requests from the public, the workshop will offer a webinar option for remote participation. While internet-based participation is an option, the quality and consistency of the technology cannot be guaranteed. Participants are encouraged to attend in person, if possible. For those using the webinar, please be prepared for the possibility of technical difficulties. The BLM would appreciate feedback from online attendees to improve this option in the future.

        The Palomino Valley Center is located about 20 miles north of Reno. From Interstate 80, take Exit 18 (Pyramid Way/State Road 445). PVC is north about 20 miles to Ironwood Road. Turn east (right) on Ironwood Road to reach the facility. PVC is the largest BLM preparation and adoption facility in the country with a capacity of 1,850 animals. It serves as the primary preparation center for wild horses and burros gathered from the public lands in Nevada and nearby states. Visitors wishing to adopt are encouraged to call the Center prior to arrival at (775) 475-2222. Public hours for visiting are held Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. and on the first Saturday of each month from 8 a.m.-noon.

        (The Associated Press and the Bureau of Land Management contributed to this report.)


      • And I know you will also mention the other facilities such as Litchfield and Broken Arrow where our wild horses and burros are forced to stand in hot sun and freezing winds 24/7 with no way of getting any relief … as I have seen them do in the wild by moving into canyons or protection from junipers. The key word here is they have the ability to MOVE in the wild… where they belong. Thank you.


  12. This is all bull! The horses have not hurt anyone! The BLM should be abolished. They cannot get anything right! It is plain to see they don’t care about the horses all they care about is lining their pockets with money!


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