BY Merle Lefkoff
I want to thank Sens. Ben Ray Luján and Martin Heinrich, and Reps. Teresa Leger Fernández and Melanie Stansbury for reintroducing the Chaco Cultural Heritage Area Protection Act (“New Mexico lawmakers introduce a bill to protect Chaco Canyon,” Nov. 18). This critical legislation will preserve lands in the Greater Chaco area sacred to surrounding communities, Pueblos and tribes, as well as citizens throughout New Mexico who value our cultural heritage.
But time is running out this year to protect these natural and cultural treasures from further oil and gas development. (Ninety percent of this area has already been developed for oil and gas.) The Bureau of Land Management has put forward a timely proposal to conserve these lands through a 20-year mineral withdrawal. This would ensure that Greater Chaco is safeguarded, while legislation makes its way through Congress. We must conserve the last remaining lands before they’re gone forever. Please join me in urging the BLM to protect Greater Chaco.
This Letter to the Editor was originally published in the Santa Fe New Mexican.
Add your comment to the BLM in support of mineral withdrawal by December 10th, 2022 by clicking here.