Tell Interior Secretary Norton to protect Otero Mesa

Earlier this year, the Interior Department approved a plan to open 95 percent of New Mexico's Otero Mesa -- part of our Greater Rockies BioGem -- to oil and gas exploration. In response, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson filed suit on April 22nd against Interior Department Secretary Gale Norton for failing to adequately protect this fragile and irreplaceable wildland.

Please go to http://www.savebiogems.org/yellowstone/takeaction.asp
and send a message telling Interior Secretary Norton that you, too, oppose opening Otero Mesa to rampant energy development.

New Mexico's Otero Mesa is home to pronghorn, burrowing owls, the endangered Aplomado falcon, mountain lions and countless other species. Beneath its grasslands lies a freshwater aquifer that is large enough to supply drinking water for New Mexicans for more than a hundred years.

Even though Governor Richardson proposed a plan for protecting the most fragile parts of Otero Mesa, the Interior Department chose instead to give oil and gas companies virtually unlimited access to this special place. The agency's decision also ignored comments submitted by tens of thousands of people from all over the country in support of protecting Otero Mesa.

What's worse, the Interior Department went ahead with its plan even though federal land managers believe there is little chance of finding economically recoverable amounts of oil and gas in the area.

Please go to http://www.savebiogems.org/yellowstone/takeaction.asp
right now and urge Interior Secretary Norton not to sacrifice this treasured piece of America's natural heritage.

Thank you for taking action.


John H. Adams
Natural Resources Defense Council


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Mai 2005

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