2007 Mining Reform Presentation

August 20, 2007 • Bonnie Gestring

Statement of Stephen D’Esposito, EARTHWORKS President, on 1872 Mining Law Reform Hearings

July 26, 2007

7/26/07 - "Today the U.S. Congress takes an important step towards reforming one of the last remaining public-resource giveaways.

The House Subcommittee on Energy and Minerals hearing on HR 2262, the Hardrock Mining and Reclamation Act of 2007, addresses the need to update a law that is long past due for reform -- the 1872 Mining Law.

National Precedent Set by New Landowner Protection Law

May 29, 2007

(Glenwood Springs, May 29) -- Today Colorado Governor Bill Ritter will sign House Bill 1252, precedent-setting legislation that is one of the most powerful state laws in the nation in terms of protecting landowners right and the environment.

"This is a brilliant piece of legislation that gives landowners a powerful tool to negotiate with companies and it requires industry to use state-of-the-art technologies to prevent and reduce damages," said Oil & Gas Accountability Project member Jim Fitzgerald, a rancher from Bayfield, CO. "There is no other law in the nation that balances the rights of landowners to protect their land with the rights of industry to develop their oil and gas."

Valle Vidal Protection Act Becomes Law

December 13, 2006

December 13, Taos, NM - After an intense and hard-fought three-year battle, President Bush signed Representative Tom Udall's Valle Vidal Protection Act of 2005 into law yesterday. The new law will permanently protect the Valle Vidal, one of New Mexico's greatest natural treasures, by withdrawing the area from mineral leasing.

"The Valle Vidal Protection Act is a great step towards New Mexico's clean energy future, said Representative Tom Udall, the bill's sponsor. "Responsible management of our energy resources means that some places, such as the Valle Vidal, are simply off limits to development."

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Abandoned Mine Legislation a Missed Opportunity

September 13, 2006

Washington, D.C. -- Though well-intentioned, the hardrock abandoned mine legislation passed today by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will do little to solve the problems from old mines. Instead, it creates new loopholes in environmental laws for mining companies.

In the West, the biggest obstacle to tackling water pollution from old mines is the lack of funding. States, local governments, and local non-profit organizations simply don't have the resources to act as "Good Samaritans" to clean up the rivers and streams. Chairman's Inhofe's substitute to the bill originally introduced by Colorado Senators Wayne Allard and Ken Salazar, S. 1848, falls short of its goal to reduce water pollution.

Hells Canyon Preservation Council, EARTHWORKS, NW Environmental Defense Center v. USFS

August 4, 2006 • Honorable Paul Papak

Letter to COGCC and CDPHE regarding disclosure and monitoring of oil and gas chemicals in Colorado

June 29, 2006 • Bruce Baizel

This letter was submitted by OGAP on behalf of five citizens organizations in Colorado. The groups believe that state agencies should be requiring disclosure of the chemicals used and monitoring of chemicals and wastes released by the oil and gas industry in Colorado.

Administration “Good Samaritan” Mine Cleanup Bill Comes Up Short

May 10, 2006

Washington, D.C. -- EARTHWORKS has been working for over a decade to bring attention to the serious issue of abandoned metal mines in the West. Communities, agricultural lands, and our fish and wildlife resources are at risk from the water pollution caused by these old mines. A real solution is needed to address this pervasive problem that affects many western watersheds.