Thurs – 1/10: The art of distraction…The administration is using the shutdown as cover for drilling in our national parks.

Photo: oil rigs in Texas wildlife refuge

Is the Trump Administration using the suffering of government employees and contractors to hide oil company shenanigans?  Why yes… yes they are!

Action #1 – Call your legislators and the House Natural Resource Committee to shut this down.

Minimum script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Rep./Committee [___] to demand that ALL drilling permit processing, drilling rig setup and operations subject to BLM inspection, public meetings and regulatory comment pages be halted until the shutdown is completely lifted.

House Natural Resource Committee: If you don’t have a legislator on this committee (check here)contact # to be confirmed with their staff…in the meantime, use
Rep. Julia Brownley: email, (CA-26): DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
or Rep. Salud Carbajal: email. (CA-24): DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
Who is my representative/senator?: 

They are using the shutdown as cover.

From Jim Hines, of the Los Padres Sierra Club:  “I just got off the phone with several of the executive staff at the U.S. Dept of the Interior which oversees the National Park Service and other federal land management agencies. They tell me that the White House wants to keep America’s national parks closed and not staffed for as long as possible. The reason is that this will allow mining and oil drilling companies to set up their operations in our national parks without any national park service personnel oversight. How sad is this, using America’s national parks as a political game to get what the extraction industry both domestic and foreign companies to get what they want. @POTUS open and staff America’s national parks.”

Handing out permits to private contractors is NOT an essential service.

From Washington Post:The department’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM)…has accepted and published 22 new drilling permit applications in AK, ND, NM and OK between the start of the shutdown and Wednesday afternoon. Officials said they did not anticipate any delays in the processing of either permit applications or requests for inspections of drilling operations on federal land.

But elsewhere the department says it is not even accepting other sorts of filings — such as public-records requests from journalists, activists and other members of the public made under the Freedom of Information Act — due to the shutdown.”

“It seems that the oil companies are getting services from the Department of the Interior when the public is not,” said Kelly Fuller, energy and mining campaign director at the Western Watershed Project, an advocacy group.” (wapo)

They weren’t going to let the shutdown affect their deadlines for drilling in Alaskan Arctic.

The BLM was also pressing ahead with Trump’s top goal of opening the pristine Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling. The department finally decided to postpone eight public listening sessions to define what activities would be permitted there, even though they told Reuters that meetings were exempted from the shutdown. However, employees aren’t available to answer questions and “…there were a lot of people concerned about how they’re conducting business during the shutdown,” said Martha Itta, administrator for the local tribal government in the village of about 450 people near the North Slope oil fields. “There was even a question to them if the meeting was illegal.” One former Interior employee said it was “unusual” to press forward with public meetings during a shutdown. Meanwhile, the comment date, Feb. 22, was not changed.

Update: The meetings are back ON

Action #2 – Protect the environment by stopping Trump’s wall!

Continue to remind our legislators that “No” means “NO”! NOTHING gets voted on in the Senate until our government is re-opened, WITHOUT funding Trump’s loony , environmentally destructive, memory-device.

Our senators were 2 of the 43 who stood up to McConnell and voted “NO” on the motion to proceed to S.1. So call them and thank them. We make them stronger.

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want to thank Sen.[___] for refusing to proceed to any legislation until the government is reopened.

Senator Feinstein: email, DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harris: email, DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Who is my representative/senator?: 



One thought on “Thurs – 1/10: The art of distraction…The administration is using the shutdown as cover for drilling in our national parks.

  1. Stop destroying our public lands. This is an outrage. This land belongs to all of us. This land belongs to our children’s children. Stop DESTROYING OUR BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY.


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