Sunday, February 07, 2010

Big Oil and the Journal

The juxtaposition of stories in the Albuquerque Journal today is remarkable.  There is a front page story that is not much more than a frontal assault on environmentalists for wanting tough emissions rules put in place.  They trotted out their traditional whiners like Teri Cole (Who I find I agree a lot with on some issues) and Harvey Yates (Republican GOP Chair and Oil Tycoon).  They are tough emission standards indeed.  The Journal does not like the fact that some environmentalists sit on decision making bodies that will chart the course for debate on this issue.  The oil and gas industry used personal attacks in the article.

The Journal then has an op-ed piece by a oil and gas lobbyist on the evils of the tough New Mexico Pit Rule(from the oil conservation division) that is meant to protect groundwater saying it will ruin the state's economy.  It wont.

And then the Journal has an excellent story on the very real possibility of a gigantic sink hole opening up and swallowing part of Carlsbad because of oil and gas related extraction of brine water from the site.  The owner of the company that caused it said it was the state's fault(the oil conservation division) for not having tougher regulations.

The thing that bothers me greatly is the assault on environmentalists for wanting to be part of the decision making process and sitting on boards and commissions that make policy.  If this is bad, then why in the legislature do we allow people who sit on the Senate Conservation Committee to work in extractive natural resource industries?  Is there a difference at the end of the day?  Oh, thats right! Legislators are elected, although it is done with oil and gas money.

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