Park Service director orders fracing comments withdrawn

National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis asked that comments the US Department of the Interior agency submitted about the Bureau of Land Management’s proposed hydraulic fracturing and well stimulation regulations on public and Indian lands be withdrawn, Jarvis said in a Nov. 12 letter to US Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah). Bishop released the letter on Nov. 26.

“The inclusion of a quote from an article on the New York Times op-ed page was inappropriate,” Jarvis wrote Bishop in response to a Sept. 6 letter the chairman of the House Natural Resource Committee’s Public Lands and Environmental Regulation Subcommittee sent him.

Citations of peer-review scientific studies did not include references to support technical comments that were submitted, Jarvis continued. “In addition, the comments did not receive appropriate review and were not signed,” he told Bishop. “For these reasons, I have asked that these comments be withdrawn from the record.”

As he released Jarvis’ letter, Bishop said, “It concerns me that the National Park Service attempted to pass off unsubstantiated information as ‘science.’ This thinly veiled attempt to vilify energy production and hydraulic fracturing on our public lands illustrates a shared agenda between the administration and anti-energy special interest groups.”

He said he was pleased the NPS director was having the comments rescinded, and hoped that, moving forward, the agency “will direct [its] efforts toward promoting the responsible use of our diverse lands and resources and away from misleading the American people.”

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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