Sunday, February 14, 2010

EARTHWORKS: Good news for New Mexico and drilling affected communities across the country (HB 259 +)

Good news for New Mexico and drilling affected communities across the country

Polluter stopping bill moves ahead

Yesterday a bill that would allow citizens to enforce environmental laws -- to stop polluters from polluting -- took a big step towards becoming law.

The New Mexico House Judiciary Committee passed Private Action to Enforce Environmental Statute - House Bill 259.

It goes to the House floor this afternoon; then it's on to the Senate. If it passes the whole legislature, the Governor will certainly sign it into law.

And more good news.

The New Mexico legislature also killed a ridiculous proposal by drilling industry champions. Industry wanted to punish communities who regulated oil & gas drilling by prohibiting them from receiving taxes generated by drilling. Only if a community let industry run wild would they get severance tax revenue. Fortunately, that proposal died (was tabled) a well deserved death this week.

This is a big deal nationwide because New Mexico is a bellwether for the entire country. Good drilling laws and regulations in New Mexico will influence other states wrestling with similar issues -- like New York and Pennsylvania.

Thanks to everyone that made calls and donated to help counter industry's initiatives.

Stay tuned for more updates. Things are looking good, but the fight is not over until this common sense bill becomes law.

Gwen Lachelt signature
Gwen Lachelt, Oil & Gas Accountability Project Director

P.S. Keep up with us on Twitter and at EARTHblog.

1 comment:

  1. This is so awesome! I love you guys because you are clearing way for us.