Releases

ICYMI: FOIAs show Zinke cozying up to special interests

The Washington Post is reporting that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s “personal schedule shows industry chiefs have frequent access” to the secretary. More from the story: Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke spent much of his first two months in office meeting with energy and other industry groups, according to personal schedules released this week under the Freedom […]

Lobbyist Bernhardt hides history of pandering to special interests

Bush administration official-turned lobbyist obscures past mishandling of ethical missteps and cozying up to special interests in government role Nominee for Deputy Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt’s rocky path back through the revolving door continued as he bristled under tough questions about his past as a lobbyist and top official during some of the […]

Will Murkowski and Senate Committee Members hold lobbyist Bernhardt accountable during confirmation hearing?

Western Values Project Launches Ad Campaign Calling On Murkowski To Do Her Job, Ask The Tough Questions During Hearing Today, Western Values Project is running a full-page ad in Politico calling on Senator Murkowski, Chair of the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources, to do her job and ask critically important questions at today’s […]

Is Interior’s monuments review a sham or is Secretary Zinke making promises he can’t keep?

Utah Senator Mike Lee claims Bears Ears will be eliminated or “significantly” reduced In shockingly matter-of-fact comments, Utah Senator Mike Lee said during a tele-town hall that Bears Ears monument will be eliminated or “significantly” reduced in size. These surprising comments come as the Department of the Interior (DOI) is still gathering public comments and […]

WVP statement on Senate’s courage on BLM rule sends a message to special interests

Chris Saeger, Executive Director of the Western Values Project, released the following statement in response to the Senate’s refusal to advance a plan to reject the Bureau of Land Management’s rule to combat wasted natural gas and tax dollars on public lands: “Every Senator who voted against this plan deserves our thanks for standing up […]

Western Values Project Files FOIA for Portman Communications Ahead of Vote on Methane Rule

Includes Former Registered Lobbyist for Industry Turned Portman Staffer Portman FOIA (Methane Rule) Western Values Project filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for all communications between the Department of Interior and Senator Portman’s Office, including communications with a former registered lobbyist for American’s Natural Gas Alliance turned Portman staffer. The request comes after […]

Zinke “Political Stunt” Tour to Advance Anti-Public Lands Agenda Off to Rough Start

As Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke visits Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments this week, Western Values Project Executive Director Chris Saeger released the following statement: “Secretary Zinke’s photo op on horseback is yet another political stunt in his campaign to advance an anti-public lands agenda. But even the best photo op can’t hide the […]

ICYMI: Congressional Budget Compromise: One Small Step Forward, One Big Step Back for Conservation Efforts

Congress provides for Greater Sage-grouse Conservation; Reduces Funding for Popular Bipartisan Land and Water Conservation Fund The recent budget compromise to fund the government for the next five months increases funding for the greater sage-grouse conservation activities by $8.9 million. This increase makes clear that Congress has acknowledged the importance of this initiative, calling on […]

Statement on Scandal Plagued DOI Deputy Secretary Nomination Bernhardt

Chris Saeger, Executive Director of the Western Values Project released the following statement in response to news that David Bernhardt has been nominated as Deputy Secretary of the Interior: “There are a million reasons why David Bernhardt shouldn’t get this job, and even more questions about his previous tenure at Interior, and in the private […]

Zinke/Trump Attack on Public Lands Silences Rural America

During the White House press briefing on President Trump’s executive order to review national monuments, Secretary Zinke was called out over the positive economic impacts of public lands and national monuments in this administration’s latest attack on rural America. “Zinke’s and Trump’s reckless order to review National Monuments will lead to shrinking and even possibly […]

Zinke adds proponent of pipelines in parks to Teddy Roosevelt all-stars

Secretary of the Interior and self-proclaimed “Teddy Roosevelt conservationist” Ryan Zinke has just named another bona fide member of the Washington DC special interests swamp to a top position at the Department of the Interior — the latest in a long line of Washington insiders to join the Trump administration.   Kate MacGregor, a former lobbyist, […]

Top Oregon legal officials see no case to sue for national lands

According to information obtained through public records requests of members of the Conference of Western Attorney’s General (CWAG), the office of the Oregon Attorney General does not believe that the state of Oregon has standing to sue for the transfer of federal public lands to the state. The results of the request can be downloaded […]

Western Values Project Calls on Senate to Press Perdue on his Troubling Record and Conflicts of Interest

Today, Western Values Project called on the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture to press Sonny Perdue on his record during his hearing to be Secretary of Agriculture. The Western Values Project — an organization that works to further the national conversation around public land use and conservation. – sent a letter to the U.S. Senate […]

WVP: Zinke must reject energy donors to match Roosevelt legacy

Whitefish, Mont. – Following the confirmation of Ryan Zinke as Interior Secretary, Executive Director of the Western Values Project released the following statement: “Secretary Zinke will tell anyone who is willing to listen, besides maybe his donors in the oil industry, that he’s just like conservation hero Teddy Roosevelt. Here’s what we have to say […]

(Still) Open for business: Implementation of the BLM’s Sage Grouse Plans Continues to Allow for Multiple-Use Public Lands Management

A new report released today by the Western Values Project titled “Open For Business,” found, despite the false claims made by oil industry lobbyists and their allies in Congress that the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) fifteen sage-grouse land management plans would stifle development on public lands, the public lands have – as promised – stayed […]

ConocoPhillips wants a pat on the back, while still wasting millions of taxpayer dollars

Recently, ConocoPhillips tooted its own horn by touting the success of its natural gas waste capture programs. While we applaud ConocoPhillips’ steps towards reducing natural gas waste, there’s an omission that is the elephant in the room— ConocoPhillips is still the largest natural gas emitter in the US. Each year, ConocoPhillips emits the equivalent of […]

The Public Lands Initiative is too much, too late and unlikely to pass

Utah Representative Rob Bishop’s Public Lands Initiative (PLI) is “too much, too late” and is an unrealistic attempt to protect the endangered artifacts and cultural resources of the Bears Ears area, according to new analysis from the Western Values Project. You can download the full report at this link. The first hearing for Congresman Bishop’s bill […]

New government report on natural gas waste outlines why the BLM methane rule is desperately needed— and quickly

A new report out by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) showcases just how badly the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) needs to revamp the way it monitors and permits methane waste on public lands. Each year, upwards of $330 million worth of methane, the main component of natural gas, is wasted on our public lands […]

Wyoming lawmakers should support BLM’s methane waste rule and seize the millions of dollars that are on the table

When your state is discussing which agencies will get budget cuts, is currently toying with making massive cuts to the athletics program of your only NCAA-Division I school in the state, has already cut $36 million from the public school system, and attempted (and was vehemently defeated) to levy a state tax on groceries, one […]

Majority of Wyoming and Montana Residents Support Changes to the Federal Coal Program

57% of Wyoming residents and 65% of Montana residents support making changes to the outdated federal coal program, according to new poll results released by Western Values Project. The failing coal program has not been reviewed in 40 years. Under the current program, coal executives are exploiting loopholes to sell coal at cut-rate prices. Coal […]

As the annual Four Corners Oil & Gas conference kicks off, let’s remember our money that’s being left on the table

The 13th Annual Four corners Oil and Gas Conference kicks off this week in Farmington, New Mexico. While many presentations, including from FLIR Systems, Inc., will focus on new technologies and best practices to help bring the oil and gas industry into the twenty-first century, there will surely be other, more-entrenched interests focused on maintaining the […]

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