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Wednesday, September 28, 2005

More push from Bush on energy development on public lands

Last Friday I put up a story on selling our public lands/national parks to developers. I don't know if the proposal talked about here is the same one from that previous article. But, it's clear that our government is serious about doing this - destroying our public lands, selling them off to developers, allowing drilling for oil there, and pulling back restrictions, etc. The scary part of this really - and the reason I found this story so interesting - is that Interior Secretary Gale A. Norton(click to read more about her) heads the dept that is in charge of our public lands. And, She's for it. She has said that she thinks the public lands may need to be opened up for energy development.

From the NY Times:
Interior Secretary Gale A. Norton said Tuesday that after the two destructive gulf hurricanes that battered the nation's energy heartland, the Bush administration would intensify its push to expand energy development on public lands including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and in the nation's coastal waters.

While Ms. Norton took no position on a Congressional proposal to end a 25-year moratorium on oil leases on the outer continental shelf and to eliminate internal departmental appeals of administration decisions to lease public lands, she did not reject its approach.

She said she had read only a two-page summary of the measure, which is before the House Resources Committee, but she was open to the idea of alternative energy development on public lands.

the secretary...spoke of what she deemed the flaws in the Endangered Species Act and of her worries about restrictions on some activities in national parks. But she carefully sidestepped any endorsement of final solutions.

Looks like we've got another fox in the hen house.