New legislation would protect Chaco Canyon from oil and gas drilling

An ecologically and culturally significant site, Chaco Canyon needs more protection from oil and gas drilling

Patrick Alexander via Flickr | Public Domain
Chaco Canyon and its surrounding area provide a safe haven for a diverse range of wildlife and are home to sites of tremendous cultural and historical importance.

We have the chance to protect a site of tremendous ecological and cultural importance.

On Nov. 17, U.S. Sens. Ben Ray Lujan and Martin Heinrich (N.M.) and Reps. Teresa Leger Fernández and Melanie Stansbury (N.M.) introduced legislation that would safeguard the cultural, historical and biological wonders surrounding Chaco Canyon National Historical Park in northwestern New Mexico. The Greater Chaco Protection Act would protect the area around the park, which is home to thousand-year-old ruins and wildlife displaced from nearby development. In the surrounding area, 90% of the land has already been leased for oil and gas drilling.

Virginia Carter, our conservation campaign associate, issued the following statement: “Oil and gas development around Chaco Canyon pollutes air and water while threatening the elk, bobcats, wild horses and numerous other species that call this area home.

“Enacting the Greater Chaco Protection Act would safeguard the Chacoan landscape’s biological marvels, cultural resources, sacred sites and scientific values and protect the health and well-being of local communities.”

Virginia Carter

Former Save America's Wildlife Campaign, Associate, Environment America


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