NOTE: THERE IS A DISCUSSION ON THIS SAME TOPIC ON THE HCN RANGE BLOG HERE. Some different kinds of comments than for NCFP readers.
In the Denver Post this morning, I saw the full page ad you see here to your right. I couldn’t figure out how to link to it, since it was an advertisement, but I did find out this on the web at Pew Environment.
Note that the Pew Charitable Trusts has on its webpage:
“The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today’s most challenging problems. Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public and stimulate civic life.”
What I found questionable about “knowledge” was the statement:
“Yet your administration is considering a plan that would open up many of these areas to new drilling, expanded logging, and coal mining.”
No one has yet explained how the proposed Colorado rule opens new areas to drilling.. it would be interesting to have that discussion here, if someone can explain the thinking.
Is the “logging” intended to mean fuel treatments in the WUI?
If so, many may be interested to know that individuals from some of the same groups named in the advertisement (when arguing why state rules were not needed) have said that the 2001 allows the same “logging” under the exception:
To maintain or restore the characteristics of ecosystem composition and structure, such as to reduce the risk of uncharacteristic
wildfire effects, within the range of variability that would be expected to occur under natural disturbance regimes of the current climatic period.”
It seems intellectually inconsistent to say, on the one hand, that fuels treatments are allowed under 2001, and then to later claim that fuels treatments are “expanded logging” and only allowed under the Colorado Rule.
Aside : under 2001, “maintain or restore” fuels treatments are not restricted to 1/2 mile from communities, so it could be argued that the 2001 Rule, in fact, allows “expanded logging” compared to the Colorado Rule.
AND coal mining
Finally, the exception that allows temporary roads (2-3 years) to vent methane from underground coal mines (not exactly the same image as “coal mining”, but.. OK..) was allowed in the proposal on 16-20K or so more acres than allowed under the 2001 Rule on (I think) one roadless area.
The way the statement is made “open up many to drilling, logging and coal mining” without an “or” instead of an “and” would indicate (as the English language is commonly used) that temporary roads for methane venting would be allowed on “many” roadless areas. Since the usual idea is that it takes more than one to be “many”, this is also not a fact.
So there are three assertions and 0/3 are, strictly speaking,true. Doesn’t seem very like a very “rigorous and analytical” approach to me. Just sayin’ ;).
PS the Pew website refers to ” A letter from 520 leading scientists expressing concern about the Colorado proposal went to the administration in December 2009.” I remember one that was sent April 14, 2010.. (I wonder if there are really two?) that I posted this blog post about on Roger Pielke, Jrs.’ blog here.