Search form

Donate Today

EarthFix

Zinke Ties National Parks Fixes to Oil, Gas Profits on Public Lands

The Interior Department plans to expand energy development on public lands and offshore to pay for the National Parks’ maintenance backlog.

February 12, 2018

The Interior Department plans to expand energy development on public lands and offshore to pay for the National Parks’ maintenance backlog.

In the Pacific Northwest, the needs range from washed-out roads and trails at Mount Rainier National Park to repairing bridges and parking lots at the Olympic National Park.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says the Parks’ maintenance backlog is $11.7 billion. The entire Interior Department’s backlog is $16 billion.

The budget plan Zinke unveiled Monday would provide $800 million in the coming fiscal year.

“Our parks are being loved to death,” Zinke told reporters. “This budget is all about rebuilding our parks system, and we’re going to use our energy holdings to pay for it.”

In other words, Zinke wants the government to sell leases to private companies to drill for oil and natural gas and build wind farms on public lands and waters.

Democrats are pushing a different plan to pay for the maintenance backlog. They want to use a portion of the revenue the government collects from mining leases on public lands.



SUPPORTED BY



An alpine meadow in Mount Rainier National Park.

Katie Campbell, KCTS9

There are 0 comments

Read Comments Hide Comments

Add new comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <xmp><em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd></xmp>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
As a public media organization, KCTS 9 is committed to presenting a diversity of voices and perspectives through the stories we produce. We invite our readers to participate in an active and respectful discourse through our comments feature. All comments are moderated before posting to our website; if we deem a comment to be inappropriate and/or threatening, it will not be published.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.