Bills Would Strengthen Requirements on Abandoned Wells for Oil and Gas Companies and Give People More Voice on Public Lands

MEDIA STATEMENT
Sept. 21, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Sharon Kayne, Communications Director, NM Voices for Children, skayne@nmvoices.org
OR: Marie-Pier Frigon, Communications Associate, mfrigon@nmvoices.org

ALBUQUERQUE, NM—James Jimenez, executive director of New Mexico Voices for Children, issued the following statement regarding two bills introduced today by U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-Colorado), which would clean up abandoned, or orphaned, oil and gas wells, strengthen bonding requirements, and expand opportunities for local input in lease sales on public lands:

“As more and more oil and gas companies are declaring bankruptcy, the number of toxic, abandoned well sites that put our kids’ health at risk will only grow. Senator Bennet’s two bills are a good step towards holding oil and gas companies accountable for pollution created during the extraction of oil and gas. They will also make sure we don’t find ourselves in this situation again and puts the health and well-being of children in New Mexico and across the country first.”

The two bills are called The Oil and Gas Bonding Reform and Orphaned Well Remediation Act (access text of the bill here; access a one-page fact sheet from Senator Bennet’s office here) and The Public Engagement Opportunity on Public Land Exploration (PEOPLE) Act (access text of the bill here; access a one-page fact sheet from Senator Bennet’s office here).

A press release from Senator Bennet’s office is available here.

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New Mexico Voices for Children is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization advocating for policies to improve the health and well-being of New Mexico’s children, families and communities. 625 Silver Ave. SW, Suite 195, Albuquerque, NM 87102; 505-244-9505 (p); www.nmvoices.org