Right now, the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Farmington Field Office in New Mexico and the Bureau of Indian Affairs’ (BIA) Navajo Regional Office are undergoing an amendment to BLM’s 2003 Resource Management Plan (RMP) to finally analyze fracking impacts in the Greater Chaco area. The scoping process ends February 20, but public meetings start November 10. The last meeting is scheduled for December 2 at Window Rock but two more may be added, one in Farmington and one in Shiprock. (Dates for public input have been extended, but we have no info at this time, Dec. 10, 2016. We will update as soon as we have info.) This is an all hands on deck moment to demand the administration finally work to address culture, communities, and climate related to Greater Chaco and beyond. We are deeply grateful for any support you can offer.
What Individuals can do to help:
- Attend a scoping meeting and/or organize a solidarity action – More information on scoping meetings can be found on Frack Off Chacoand BLM’s website. Not able to be on Navajo Nation? Register an action on our solidarity map(petition deliveries, meetings with officials, photos, rallies, demonstrations, interruptions, etc.) to demonstrate support.
- Make your voice heard – Sign the petition(and share it!). Send additional scoping comments by email to BLM_NM_FFO_Comments@blm.gov. Note that comments will have to be individualized to count independently.
Just like the Standing Rock Sioux, New Mexico’s Indigenous, Latino and low-income communities are shouldering the majority of the negative impacts from oil and gas drilling, infrastructure and transportation. A thousand years ago, Chaco Canyon in northern New Mexico was the ceremonial center of ancestral Pueblo Indians, whose culture encompassed 75,000 square miles of the Southwest. Today, Chaco Canyon lies within Navajo Nation and is a World Heritage Site – one of the most important cultural sites in the Americas.
Sacred sites for all Indigenous peoples of the Southwest, precious water resources, the area’s clean air ,and our climate are all now under a grave and growing threat from fracking. Today, Navajo communities of Greater Chaco are living amid extensive oil and gas development with no regard for public health or safety. Over the last three years, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has approved more than 365 new fracking proposals without adequate Tribal consultation or analysis. On July 11, 2016, six fracking wells exploded in a fire that burned for days and forced dozens of families to evacuate, exposing the complete absence of an emergency response plan or necessary safeguards. And while the Bureau of Land Management has acknowledged it never analyzed how this fracking boom will impact public health and the environment, the agency continues to approve fracking activities with no plan in place to protect the region’s air, water, and people.
Stand with us and help stop fracking in Greater Chaco. Please, let us know if we can provide you with any other information so that you may support as outlined above.
- Forward this email to friends asking for their support.