Give back the authority to fine oil and gas for safety violations

Despite hundreds of violations, New Mexico oil and gas companies have not paid a cent in penalties since 2010. From 2007 through 2009, New Mexico collected hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalties per year from the oil and gas industry. In 2009, however, an oil and gas company won a court case that effectively stopped New Mexico from collecting penalties for rule violations.

Senate Bill 307 would restore the authority of Oil Conservation Division to fine oil and gas operators and to increase penalties, which haven’t been updated since 1935.

This bill will be heard in Senate Conservation at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 21, in Room 311. SB307 is third on the agenda for Tuesday in Senate Conservation Committee.

SB286, which would ban cruel traps and poisons on public lands, is first on the agenda and is expected take a lot of time. Please attend to show the public’s overwhelming support for both bills!

Please call the Conservation Committee senators and ask the person who answers the phone that you are calling to ask Sen. XX to to support SB307 giving the Oil Conservation Division the right to impose fines for safety violations. It would also be great to call or write for SB286 if you haven’t already.

Click here for phone numbers and email addresses for senators on key committees. 

Thanks everyone for your stupendous involvement so far! And please let us know at riogrande.chapter@sierraclub.org that you’ve called or written!

Give back the authority to fine oil and gas for safety violations