Stop Trump's attack on Native lands. No drilling in Chaco Canyon.
The Trump regime is conspiring once again with the oil and gas industry to destroy our public lands, and if we don't act now, one of our nation's most significant cultural and historical Native sites could be erased.
The Bureau of Land Management is putting up for lease pristine areas in the Greater Chaco Landscape, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and ancestral home for the Hopi, Navajo, and Pueblo people, threatening ancient tribal sites, posing a significant health and safety risk to communities in the area, and exacerbating the climate crisis.
Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt, who oversees the BLM, is a former oil and gas lobbyist, so it's no surprise that he and others in Trump's pro-fossil fuel administration are quickly pushing the sale of new fracking leases and more fracking wells. We must speak out now to prevent more industrialized fracking from moving forward.
Tell the Bureau of Land Management: Protect Native lands. No drilling and fracking in the Greater Chaco Landscape.
The areas in Greater Chaco Landscape contain the threatened ruins of Chaco Canyon — what some have referred to "as close as the U.S. gets to Egypt’s pyramids and Peru’s Machu Picchu" — as well as "the remnants of great houses, kivas, ancient roads and sacred places built a millennium ago by an indigenous people who became proficient in architecture, agriculture, astronomy and the arts."1,2 Today, the Diné or Navajo people rely on the Chaco Landscape to sustain their livelihoods and traditional practices and modern New Mexican Pueblos, the descendants of Chaco culture, still consider these sites sacred.3
More than 91% of the area around Chaco Canyon has already been leased to the oil and gas industry, yet Sec. Bernhardt and his Big Oil cronies are eager to wipe out the last remaining protected sacred areas with dangerous drilling and fracking techniques. The democratically-led House or Representatives recently passed an amendment to a spending bill that included a one-year moratorium on drilling in the area, yet it's unclear whether the Republican-controlled Senate will include the provision in their version, and BLM continues to approve more fracking in the area.4 That's why pressure on the BLM is so important right now.
Activism to stop drilling in the Greater Chaco Landscape works.5 Thanks to local leaders fighting on the ground in New Mexico in 2018 and the more than 178,000 CREDO members who took action, then-Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke canceled a proposed oil and gas lease sale in Chaco Canyon. Now we must speak out again to stop rampant fracking once and for all.
Thank you for your activism.
- Elizabeth Miller, "'As close as the US gets to Egypt’s pyramids': how Chaco Canyon is endangered by drilling," The Guardian, Nov. 8, 2017.
- Richard Moe, "The Treasures of Chaco Canyon Are Threatened by Drilling," The New York Times, Dec. 1, 2017.
- Sen. Tom Udall, "Udall, Heinrich, Luján Urge Secretary Zinke to Defer All Leases on Land Near Chaco Culture National Historical Park," Sept. 6, 2017.
- Hannah Grover, "An appropriations bill includes a one-year moratorium on leases near Chaco," Farmington Daily Times, June 26, 2019.
- Stephanie Lavallato, "Victory: Chaco Canyon saved from fossil fuel drilling," CREDO Mobile, March 7, 2018.