The Four Corners Region is home to vast stretches of tribal and public lands impacted by oil, gas and mining extraction. Our work engages with frontline Indigenous communities impacted by the oil and gas industry in the Four Corners region with the aid of key partners and individuals. In addition to working with community members, Earthworks seeks to work with tribal, state, and federal governmental offices responsible for environmental issues. We hope our investigations will be useful and valuable to community members to visualize harms from extraction for chapter house meetings and coalition meetings, and will also pressure oil and gas operators to be a better neighbor.
The Four Corners Region is where our field staff conduct frequent investigations of oil and gas facilities using optical gas imaging (OGI) technology and document its impact on nearby residents and indigenous communities. We collect OGI videos of pollution with the help of local community members then report them to the responsible agency for non-compliance with tribal, federal and state regulations.
We encourage tribal policymakers to support the voices of frontline communities through legislation that would prohibit new oil and gas permits on tribal lands and to hold oil and gas operators accountable for the costs of harmful pollution contributing to the climate crisis. By creating educational materials and visuals, we aim to support environmental justice among Indigenous communities, who are the first to experience the direct impacts of mineral extraction and production.