By stupid, I don’t mean you. I mean — oh, never mind.
Garfield County contract with property rights group gets criticism
Services sought to help with sage grouse collaboration
Sage grouse – yeah that’s the ticket. So BOCC spokeshole Tom Jankovsky claims they hired the American Stewards of Liberty – a private property rights organization (lobbying firm) – to help them move forward on the county’s sage grouse plan.
“In the end, what we want to do is figure out what’s best for the sage grouse and also for our constituents,” Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said.
I don’t know about you but I kinda like sage grouse a whole lot better than oil & gas wells. They’re dumb and fluffy and they don’t pollute.
“I believe everyone is in agreement that it would be best not to have the sage grouse listed,” he said.
By “everyone” he means him and King John and Mikey.
“What we’re saying is that we have a local program, which has buy-in from local landowners and the Division of Parks and Wildlife that, in my opinion, will do a better job of protecting the species.”
By wiping them out altogether so the oil & gas industry doesn’t have to think about them anymore.
You see, Jankovsky gets to speak because he’s not running for re-election this year. Apparently John Martin and Mike Samson have no clue what’s going on so they just rely on good ol Tom to make all the big decisions and they go along to get along.
And they think we’re really stupid. Sage grouse?
I told you that hiring American Stewards for Liberty (ALEC) is all about the BOCC moving forward with their agenda to uphold the existing Bush-era drilling plan on the Roan Plateau. Don’t let the sage grouse ruse distract you.
Stay with me.
In 2007, the BLM gave the go-ahead to drill for gas on the Roan Plateau, despite the protests of environmentalists, hunters, fishermen, and landowners. The Roan Plateau drilling plan projected up to 1,570 wells would be drilled from 193 pads over 20 years, including 210 wells from on top of the plateau, which is considered more environmentally sensitive.
In 2008, environmental groups filed suit against the BLM’s record lease sale claiming, “The Roan Plateau encompasses 115 square miles of pristine wilderness in Colorado, and is home to many mammal and bird species, including the Greater Sage-Grouse.”
On June 22, 2012, U.S. District Judge Marcia S. Krieger in Denver set aside the resource management plan approved in 2007. Judge Krieger ruled that BLM’s plan should be set aside because the agency failed to consider a more balanced alternative that would have better protected the Roan’s wildlife, plants and pristine lands. The court also ruled that the BLM failed to take a hard look at air pollution from the oil and gas drilling. Then the Gasfield BOCC called for a prompt review of the drilling plan.
One month before that ruling, on May 23, 2012, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced:
“After a thorough analysis of the best available scientific information, the Fish and Wildlife Service has concluded that the greater sage-grouse warrants protection under the Endangered Species Act … As a result, the greater sage-grouse will be placed on the list of species that are candidates for Endangered Species Act Protection.”
If the sage grouse gets on the endangered species list, oil and gas drilling would be severely restricted – possibly even prohibited – on the Roan Plateau.
Recently there was a fight in Texas over the dunes sagebrush lizard. Guess who kept the dunes sagebrush lizard off the endangered species list.
“On June 14, 2012, American Stewards of Liberty had a remarkable victory. After a year of working with the oil and gas industry, eight counties in Texas and New Mexico and one soil and water conservation district, we prevented the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) from listing a three-inch lizard known as the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard (DSL) as endangered …”
Keep your eye on the Roan Plateau.