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Friday, November 05, 2010

Governor Bill Richardson Urges President Obama to Designate Otero Mesa a National Monument

Governor Bill Richardson is urging President Obama to designate Otero Mesa in Southern New Mexico a National Monument (see letter). Otero Mesa is the largest expanse of Chihuahuan Desert Grassland on public lands in the U.S.

“As governor I have fought hard to protect Otero Mesa, but if we are going to ensure the protection of this national treasure for future generations we need a permanent federal designation,” Governor Richardson said.

Otero Mesa is 1.2 million acres and home to over 1,000 native plant and animal species, including pronghorn antelope, black-tailed prairie dogs, desert mule deer, mountain lions, golden and bald eagles, and 250 species of migratory songbirds. The Salt Basin Aquifer below it is believed to be one of the state’s largest remaining untapped fresh drinking water resources. The critical habitat was nearly sacrificed to energy exploration before the Richardson Administration along with a strong coalition of environmentalists, ranchers and hunters stepped in to halt the drilling.

No doubt, time is of the essence now that Governor Richardson will be leaving office and right-wing Republican Susana Martinez has been elected governor in a campaign that received large donations from oil and gas interests, as well as from Claytie Williams, who is currently involved in a heavily criticized water scheme. 

November 5, 2010 at 11:20 AM in Environment, Gov. Bill Richardson, Obama Administration, Susana Martinez, Water Issues | Permalink



Posted by: Ejército Libertador del Sur | Nov 8, 2010 10:05:09 AM

I live in Otero County. i hope Gov. Richardson can persuade President Obama to make that designation. it would protect the wildlife and the flora and the underground source of good water. But here in Otero we have a bunch of wackos that run our county government and they will demonize the the Presidents efforts as being Muslim and not of this country."Hope dare he make plans about OUR mesa" For two cents I would leave not only this county but this country as well. But just to be stinky I'll stay and fight.

Posted by: Stephanie DuBois | Nov 8, 2010 2:26:59 PM

And what will the wackos of Otero do about it Stephanie? Beat up their teddy bears? Get drunk? Get even more drunk? Launch a guerilla assault on Hoffman Air Force Base in their late-model Chevy pickups?

Poor things. Their children are leaving them and they, and their towns in the County are dying. Pretty soon there wont be enough of them left to remember when the Mesa wasn't a National Monument.

And since the Otero Mesa National Monument will bring new development and less backward voters with it, they will soon be as irrelevant as their cheap gin-soaked kin in Dona Ana County are now.

I say do it now!

Posted by: Ejército Libertador del Sur | Nov 8, 2010 5:15:46 PM

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