DENVER – June is national Great American Outdoors Month, and in celebration Western Energy Alliance today commends the largest financial contributor of federal conservation funding: the oil and natural gas industry. Under the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), the industry provides 94% of the $2.8 billion annually that goes to national parks and public lands. The law was passed in 2020 and built on a 50-year tradition of balancing productive uses of public lands with protection of America’s treasured landscapes. Unfortunately, this immense source of conservation funding is under threat from anti-oil-and-gas policies advanced by the Biden Administration.
“We’re proud to say the nation’s largest conservation programs are funded almost exclusively from revenues generated by oil and natural gas producers on federal lands,” said Kathleen Sgamma, president of the Alliance. “Back in 2020, we helped get GAOA passed to provide an appropriate balance between responsible energy development on working landscapes while preserving our nation’s iconic landscapes. We care how the government uses the billions of dollars oil and natural gas companies generate annually.”
DENVER – Western Energy Alliance today denounced Interior Secretary Deb Haaland’s decision to withdraw lands from oil and natural gas leasing for the next 20 years around the Chaco Culture National Historical Park. The Interior Secretary ignored the Navajo Nation’s compromise proposal and her own conflicts of interest.
“Despite her conflicts of interest, Secretary Haaland announced a withdrawal of land around Chaco that threatens the livelihoods of 5,500 Navajos near the park. She completely ignored the democratic resolutions of the sovereign Navajo Nation whose lands surround the park to put the interests of her tribe, based a hundred miles away, and obstructionist groups first,” said Kathleen Sgamma, president of Western Energy Alliance. “The decision prevents Navajo property owners from accessing the oil and natural gas resources they own which provide them with their sustenance. Secretary Haaland didn’t even consider the Navajo compromise proposal when conducting the NEPA analysis necessary to support this decision, which leaves her and the Interior Department legally vulnerable.”