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Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Our dear leader the Chimpeder peeks for oil

In a registered user only story from the LA Times, we can start to understand the thought process of the Bush administration concerning stewardship of the environment.

First off, lets look at the wilderness acreage set aside by presidents during the last 40 years:

########## Johnson
# Nixon
### Ford
################################################################# Carter
########## Reagan
#### Bush-1
######### Clinton
½ Bush-2

where each # represents 1 million acres. Clearly, we are losing ground in set-aside lands. GW Bush is clearly not an enviro-fiend like Carter and not even enviro-friendly as Nixon was when he signed off on the creation of the EPA in 1970.

This sets the stage for the authors' analysis on the admin's oil policy with respect to native land exploration and extraction. Thanks to Cursor for pointing to this bit of climate changing philosophy:
"Deer, elk, sage grouse, all the charismatic mega-fauna we have tried to protect, are no longer considered to be part of the natural heritage; they're considered impediments to oil and gas development," said Dennis J. Willis, an outdoor recreation planner for the BLM in Utah and a 28-year agency veteran, who made it clear he was speaking for himself and not the bureau. "It's like saying the Vatican and the Colosseum are impediments to urban renewal in Rome."

and
Mat Millenbach, a longtime BLM employee and former state director in Montana who left in 2002, said he became concerned when the Bush administration began referring to wildlife protections as "impediments" to leasing.

It goes on from there, pointing to the admin's indifference to other facets of environmental protection, including potential pollution problems due to increased oil exploration activity.

My only concern is that the article's authors apparently have not been totally enlightened by knowledgeable oil depletion experts, as they write:
The effort is so intense in the oil- and gas-rich Rockies that some Bureau of Land Management employees there have taken to calling the region "the OPEC states."

Instead of "states", given the locality and actual content of oil, perhaps wiser to characterize these regions as OPEC counties, or, more accurately, OPEC townships.

In summary: The great uniter's administration blames our energy woes on furry little impediments. All the while, chief impediment Chimpy, doesn't realize that if he would care to lift a rock and peek underneath, he wouldn't find much anyways.

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