Feverish natural gas drilling has wreaked havoc on West's precious natural features

“The industrial takeover of the West is not about oil or the price of gasoline at the pump. Domestic oil production, in fact, has suffered from a shell game.

Nearly all the drilling on public lands is, in fact, about methane: natural gas. The booty at the wellhead is methane and stockholder cash.”

Natural gas drilling is hurting land. By Ed Dentry, Rocky Mountain News.

Bush/Cheney/McCain say “drill and lower gasoline prices,” but most of the drilling onshore in the West is not for oil, but for natural gas (which is mostly methane).




  1. Mack P. Bray Avatar
    Mack P. Bray

    Sportsmen for Responsible Energy Development is definately taking the point position on this issue.

    “Sportsmen for Responsible Energy says “drilling hysteria” is leading to the destruction of a culture that enlists six million hunters and anglers and sustains a $7.4 billion recreational economy in five Western states.”

    Bob Wharff, Executive Director for Some Sportsmen for Some Fish and All The Big Game and Predators We Can Legally Kill of Wyoming, should spew his thoughts on:

    1. Judge Malloy’s injunction

    2. Natural gas wells on public land in Wyoming and his group’s position as to how wildlife/big game is affected AND WHAT HIS GROUP INTENDS TO DO ABOUT IT.

    Mack P. Bray
    Wildlife Watchers

  2. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    I have had this same discussion with many folks that are very ignorant to the situation.

    Drilling for Natural Gas (Methane) will not lower the price of Gasoline at the pump, period, and it never will unless we turn our fleet and infrastructure into NG. So why do we want to rape and pillage our land for something that does not effect the energy crisis we are in.

    But with that said this is not all Bush’s fault either. Everyday you hear the Dems state that we need to be drilling on the 64 million acres of leases that the oil companies have, (the Nanci Pelosi Use It or Loose It Plan). Well guess what, a big portion of those leases are in the Rockies on our public lands. Also a vast majority of those leases were issued under the Clinton/Gore administration when the price of NG was cheap, and it is only now that the oil companies find it ecinomically viable to drill much of those leases.

    The Jonah Field in Wyoming is a perfect example of this. Most of the Jonah Field leases were issued under Clinton in the late ’90s after this formation was discovered by McMurray Oil in 1993. Bush’s administration though has done a poor job in Wyoming ensuring enviromental quality in Wyoming in areas being drilled and he also has allowed the spacing of well pads to be smaller.

  3. vicki Avatar

    With the Bush Administration pushing for legislation to open the Rocky Mountains in , among aother states, Colorado…a Bush stay of execution for enivironmental murderers…we need to speak up now.

    I have seen first hand the ugly impact that drilling and energy developement in Colorado has had on a number of Colorado areas. It’s like baby Jonah Fields everywhere. You can’t drive far without seeing oil crews. Mnay of them are on private land, so we have no hope of impact.

    It is crucial that we speak up and fight to keep more drilling minimized if not ended.

    Though Colorado is a national leader in natural gas production, it is still one of the most inflated energy markets in the U.S. For any idiot to say we need to drill here more, for natural gas or oil shale, is a huge lie. It won’t help Coloradoans get lower energy prices, or we’d already have them.

    There are so many excise taxes on energy here that it makes my head spin. Yet, little of that money is spent on exploration of renewable energy. Excel energy has began a wind campaign, but it is small potatoes compared to what they could do if they developed local solar grids, with what would likely amount to similar costs and off-set expenses for consumers as wind does.

    Please, comment to the Rocky Mountain News about this. I have seen the number of people here who post, call and email to be heard on important issues. It is imparitive that we do that now. Colorado is the next stop for wolves who may have a chance to disperse now, and home to so many species that would suffer…including sage grouse. Not to mention it would be the greater Rocky Mountain region, not just Colorado, that will be raped in the name of energy.

    Let’s get behind this movement… I urge you to speak up.

  4. Bryce Avatar

    The gas companies have made efforts to hide these wells in hidden canyons, behind dirt burms, with special buildings, enclosures, forest cover, and so many more. It is in their interest to keep their landlords happy. I am a resident of such a property in Southwest Colorado that just so happens to have sold its Mineral Rights to gas companies a few generations before myself. Now you may say that that is exactly what you’re talking about but look at it this way. We bought the land knowing full well the implications of a gas company owning the mineral rights. If we didn’t want that then we shouldn’t have bought it.

    Now, on the topic of cost of this energy, purely understand supply and demand will determine that. This malarcky that you’re spouting off about, “It won’t help Coloradoans get lower energy prices, or we’d already have them.” I mean seriously, WTF does that mean. More wells, equals more product, equals lower prices due to reduced costs. And if people like you didn’t kick and scream like that 5 year old who thinks she knows more than her Father, they probably wouldn’t have to spend so much damn money and the rest of us could enjoy those reduced prices. Lady, you’re probably some aging 40 or 50 yr. old that watches keith olberman and claims it to be the word of God. You and that worthless guy can both go jump in a grease fire, and do the world a favor.

    Once again I ask that everyone please, just once, think for yourself AND try to look at BOTH sides of the argument. Environmentalists. Your motives are applaudable but your methods are misguided and detrimental themselves sometimes. I love nature and will continue to do my part in budgeting her use. Join my cause and not Vicki’s because she is one of the sheep of evil sheppards. I am simply an outdoorsman; a well educated outdoorsman tired of the shenanigans.

    That is all,


  5. Bryce Avatar

    The last post I left was missing the first two paragraphs. I dont feel like expounding on it any more so let the last three be the theme for the missing two that were on solar and wind cons similar to what you were talking about. Basically its not worth my time to say any more. Please respond I’d like a good argument.


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan