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What President Obama should have said about natural gas.

Lauren Pagel's avatar
By Lauren Pagel

November 5, 2010

In the aftermath of the election this week, President Obama made remarks that struck fear in the hearts of communities facing natural gas extraction in their backyards.

"We've got, I think, broad agreement that we've got terrific natural gas resources in this country. Are we doing everything we can to develop those?" was the question President Obama asked.

The question he SHOULD have been asking is (find out after the jump):

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Tagged with: fracking, hydraulic fracturing, pavillion, obama, halliburton, dimock


BLM outreach to mining claim holders on abandoned mines

Lauren Pagel's avatar
By Lauren Pagel

October 7, 2010

Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began an outreach program to individuals or companies that have mining claims on public lands under the 1872 Mining Law. The goal of the outreach is to help the Bureau mitigate abandoned mine hazards.

Outreach to claimants is a laudable goal, and something the BLM should do more of. Unfortunately, regardless of how much outreach the BLM conducts, it will not change the fact that because of the antiquated 1872 Mining Law, there isn't enough money available to truly deal with our abandoned mine problem.

There are over a half a million abandoned mines in this country that could cost as much as $50 billion to clean up. Many of these abandoned mines pose serious public safety hazards, while others pollute streams and rivers. Yet, most years the BLM, Forest Service and National Park service spend less than $25 million on abandoned mine reclamation. EARTHWORKS helped to get some money in the 2009 stimulus bill for abandoned mine remediation, but nowhere near the $50 billion estimate.

Because the 1872 Mining Law allows mining companies to take valuable minerals like gold, copper and uranium from public lands for free, with no royalty or fee paid to the taxpayer, the abandoned mines that littler our public lands continue to pose threats to people and the environment.

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Tagged with: 1872 mining law, abandoned mines


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