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300,000 acres of public lands on the fracking auction block this month

Source: WildEarth Gaurdians

Sales to oil and gas industry fly in face of new climate change reports

The Trump administration is ramping up fracking in December 2018, despite two recent reports highlighting it should be doing everything but. Today, December 11, the administration intends to sell 33,000 acres in Nevada; 12,500 acres in Montana; 720 acres in Wyoming; and 154,000 acres in Utah. Last week, it sold off nearly 90,000 acres in New Mexico, including lands in the Greater Chaco region, which generated widespread protest. All told, nearly 300,000 acres of public lands are up for sale throughout the American West this month.

On November 23, a new federal climate assessment report (the Fourth National Climate Assessment) stressed the need for need for “immediate and substantial global greenhouse gas emissions reductions.” That same day, the U.S. Geological Survey released its latest assessment of greenhouse gas emissions from producing and consuming fossil fuels from public lands, finding that oil and gas production (including onshore and offshore) accounts for more than 540 million metric tons annually—equal to the emissions from more than 130 coal-fired power plants.

Naturally, Guardians is fighting back. Together with allies, we’ve filed comments, appeals, and litigation to block the administration’s plans. And we won’t stop until they Keep It in the Ground.

Read the press release.


6 replies »

  1. Was the land sold or leased? The language isn’t clear about what is really going on. A lease generally is put out for bid which allows the winning bidder the right to access and extract certain resources, typically mineral, and usually some small percentage of income from production is paid to the government. Ownership of the land is not part of the contract. Is something different here? Is title being transferred to public lands by these leases? Simple question I can’t answer by reading this or their website.



    Earthjustice is stopping fracking by:

    Defending communities from fracking. In 2012, Earthjustice began representing the town of Dryden, New York, against an oil and gas company seeking to overturn local zoning laws limiting oil and gas development. In 2014, local communities triumphed over the fracking industry in the precedent-setting case, when the NY Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, ruled that the towns of Dryden and Middlefield can use local zoning laws to ban heavy industry, including oil and gas operations, within municipal borders.

    PROTECTING PUBLIC LANDS. Earthjustice is challenging fracking on public lands, national forests, wildlife refuges and other special places, to protect pristine landscapes and endangered species.

    Opposing oil and gas infrastructure projects that drive new development.Earthjustice is challenging two gas storage projects proposed for underground salt caverns on the shores of Seneca Lake, New York; a 122-mile interstate pipeline from Pennsylvania to New York, and a proposed liquefied natural gas export terminal on the Chesapeake Bay.


  3. Hearing on Fracking Wastewater Well in Sioux County, NE (clip)

    Nebraska Oil & Gas Conservation Commission hearing on an out-of-state company’s application to export its toxic fracking wastewater into Nebraska, moving 80 truckloads carrying 10,000 barrels per day of pollution destined to be dumped into a disposal well in Sioux County — transferring all the risk onto Nebraska farmers and ranchers.


  4. Why do we need to further fragment ever more fragile ecosystems all over the West? This just in:

    Largest continuous oil and gas resource potential ever
    December 6, 2018 US Geological Survey

    USGS announces an assessment of continuous oil and gas in Texas and New Mexico’s Delaware Basin, the largest USGS has ever conducted, with an estimate of 46.3 billion barrels of oil and 281 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

    Today, the U.S. Department of the Interior announced the Wolfcamp Shale and overlying Bone Spring Formation in the Delaware Basin portion of Texas and New Mexico’s Permian Basin province contain an estimated mean of 46.3 billion barrels of oil, 281 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, and 20 billion barrels of natural gas liquids, according to an assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). This estimate is for continuous (unconventional) oil, and consists of undiscovered, technically recoverable resources.

    “Christmas came a few weeks early this year,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. “American strength flows from American energy, and as it turns out, we have a lot of American energy. Before this assessment came down, I was bullish on oil and gas production in the United States. Now, I know for a fact that American energy dominance is within our grasp as a nation.”

    “In the 1980’s, during my time in the petroleum industry, the Permian and similar mature basins were not considered viable for producing large new recoverable resources. Today, thanks to advances in technology, the Permian Basin continues to impress in terms of resource potential. The results of this most recent assessment and that of the Wolfcamp Formation in the Midland Basin in 2016 are our largest continuous oil and gas assessments ever released,” said Dr. Jim Reilly, USGS Director. “Knowing where these resources are located and how much exists is crucial to ensuring both our energy independence and energy dominance.”


  5. Reblogged this on Changing for the Climate and commented:
    The fact that this is something the US president’s administration contributed to is showing the inaction and the lack of steps taken towards the right direction. It shows that words have yet to reach our world leaders’ ears and something must be done soon. It is unfair for the planet to be suffering at the hands of people who clearly do not respect it and for it to have to depend on those people to make a change for it in order to save it. Recent protests have, however,m proven how strong the people are together as they caught the eye of many newspapers and news channels all over the world. This is an example of a step towards the right direction. Sadly, we cannot have any real change be made if our world leaders do not cooperate. The fact that the Trump administration was in fact selling this many acres of land for something as terrible as fracking to be done to the environment shows that a lot more needs to be done from the citizens of the country, in order to stop fracking for our own good and for our planet above all.


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