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Kudos to Salazar

Posted: April 28, 2009 9:06 p.m.
Updated: April 29, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
Since taking office in January, Secretary Salazar has set a high priority on renewable energy, put the brakes on the Bush administration's full-steam-ahead approach to destructive oil shale development and canceled oil and gas leases on the edge of Utah national parks and historic sites on nearby public land.

Yet Salazar's measured approach has provoked a backlash by the oil and gas industry, which heretofore had enjoyed a privileged status during the eight years of the Bush administration.

Secretary Salazar's understanding that he is a steward of our public lands and not the servant of the oil industry is a breath of fresh air.

With the Obama administration placing conservation and renewable energy issues high on its agenda, these initial steps should be the first of many more toward the reforms needed to ensure that the oil and gas industry doesn't needlessly wreck more of our fragile western landscapes.

Secretary Salazar should continue the agency's shift away from giving the oil industry whatever it wants to insisting on balanced use of lands that belong to all of us.

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