For immediate release: May 10, 2017
Contact: Mona Blaber, Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter communications,
Today, every Senate Democrat and three Republicans voted down a procedural vote that would have paved the way for revoking a Bureau of Land Management rule to prevent leaking and flaring of methane from oil and gas operations on public and tribal lands.
In response, the Sierra Club released the following statements:
From Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune:
“Today is a victory for our public lands and for the health of families across America, and a defeat for Donald Trump, corporate polluters, and their friends on Capitol Hill. Protecting our communities and our public lands from pollution isn’t a Democrat or Republican issue, it’s an American one, and no matter how much corporate polluters and their allies in the White House and Capitol Hill rant and rave, they will never drown out the voices of millions of Americans demanding that we protect our public lands, clean air and water and the health of our communities.”
From Rio Grande Chapter Director Camilla Feibelman:
“All Democrats and three Republicans chose taxpayers and children over oil and gas lobbyists. Common sense and the well-being of our families won out over reckless devotion to one industry’s demands.
With the world’s biggest methane cloud hovering over our Four Corners region, this rule means a lot to New Mexico communities. Sierra Club generated more than 3,000 calls and 67,000 emails into Senate offices. This outcome is thanks to the efforts of tens of thousands of New Mexicans who sent comments supporting this rule, and to Sens. Udall and Heinrich, who have been champions of this common-sense safeguard.”
Reduction of methane, a potent greenhouse gas 80 times more powerful than CO2, means a much better chance for a safe climate. While we will still must work hard to protect this rule, invoking the Congressional Review Act would have also prevented any “substantially similar” rule from EVER being implemented. Thanks to concerned citizens all over the nation and to champions like Sens. Udall and Heinrich, we don’t have to worry about that.”