“Right now I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say that the oil and gas industry in New Mexico is essentially self-regulating,” said Eric Jantz, an attorney with the New Mexico Environmental Law Center… “Oil and gas brings out its lobbyists and gets people from the oil patch to come and testify and spreads money around.” NMPolitics.net
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The notice mailed Wednesday notes the lab missed a December final deadline for completion of Los Alamos clean-up work and hasn’t asked for an extension of the now-expired schedule that was set a decade ago. That makes DOE and Los Alamos National Security LLC (LANS), the lab’s private manager, liable for civil penalties and subject to injunction, says the notice by attorney Jonathan Block of the New Mexico Environmental Law Center. Albuquerque Journal
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Read Filed Notice of Intent.
“...the Oil Conservation Commission forgot who they worked for. It isn’t the oil and gas industry.” Bruce Baizel, Executive Director, Earthworks’ OGAP
SANTA FE, NM — Yesterday, groups working to protect New Mexico’s water resources and wildlife asked the state Supreme Court to review the Martinez Administration’s “Pit Rule”. The Rule governs the storage and disposal of wastes at oil and gas drilling pits in New Mexico.
The petition for a writ of certiorari was filed by the New Mexico Environmental Law Center (NMELC) on behalf of Earthworks’ Oil and Gas Accountability Project and the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance. The public interest groups have been working on the issue since before the Pit Rule was first adopted in 2008, after a lengthy public process. The petition asks the state’s highest court to review a decision handed down by the state Court of Appeals in February upholding the amended Pit Rule. See Pit Rule Fact Sheet.
Today, the NMELC and other groups petitioned the U.S. EPA to stop allowing industries to dump their hazardous waste in our country’s groundwater.
One reason why this petition is important to New Mexico:
NMELC’s client, the Eastern Navajo Diné Against Uranium Mining (ENDAUM), has been fighting for years to get an aquifer exemption overturned. The EPA granted the exemption for uranium mining in an aquifer near Church Rock shortly before the aquifer was deemed by the Navajo Nation as “a promising source of drinking water in the future due to its high quality”. See NRDC press release.