BLM Proposes Oil & Gas Drilling Under Moab's Slickrock

Jan 27, 2020
by James Smurthwaite  
Photos: Gravity Candy

The Bureau of Land Management has announced it has opened up two parcels of land underneath the Slickrock trail in Moab, Utah for leasing for oil and gas extraction.

The 10.5 mile Slickrock trail is one of the most iconic in mountain biking as riders head out over petrified sand dunes for a physical and technical test in the desert. The BLM is opening seven parcels of land in total in Grand County, Utah, two of which are in the Salt Flats where Slick Rock is located. One of these is said to cover two-thirds of the trail. The land was nominated for consideration in November 2019 by an anonymous company however, its name will be revealed during a public consultation period.

The BLM says that not all leased land gets developed and the current parcels would not allow any surface work to be completed, however directional drilling from adjacent parcels could still be used to extract the fossil fuels from under the trails.

Emily Niehaus, Moab Mayor, told the Salt Lake Tribune: "My concern is always that we maintain a balance in our valley and county and surrounding public lands. We know oil and gas are part of the makeup of our economy. We have done a good job of saying where recreation goes and where extraction goes. My question is: Are the recreation areas going to be negatively impacted?"


The proposed land will now undergo a period of public consultation that begins on February 20 and lasts for 30 days. They will then become available for lease in June. The operators will then have to submit a proposal and an environmental analysis will be conducted. Reports indicate that the bids will not pass the public consultation as the potential for energy production is low and the land should generate more revenue through tourism than drilling.

A public fightback is already happening with some mountain bikers proposing to start a crowdfund to outbid the oil companies and industry veteran, Ashely Korenblat, encouraging local businesses to co-sign her letter to U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt opposing the plans. She told Bicycle Retailer and Industry News: "We have a good chance of winning, but not if we do nothing: funny how that works." Her letter can be read in full and signed here.

The leases come as part of Trump's Energy Dominance plan that saw him pull out of the Paris Climate agreement, open up new land for leasing and cut the red tape that prevented the construction of energy infrastructure such as pipelines. Last year, the USA held 28 onshore oil and gas lease sales that generated $1.1 billion USD.

Read more about the BLM proposals, here.

Regions in Article
Sand Flats Recreation Area

Posted In:
Industry News



302 Comments

  • 410 72
 For all of the Trump supporters...at what point do you realize that he doesn't give a F--K about anything, or anyone but himself. Last week he rolled back clean air and water policies in place since the 70s.
  • 134 22
 You mean to tell me the "drain the swamp" guy isn't concerned about preserving things like wetlands? Whaaaaaaaat?
  • 125 25
 As much as I dislike the guy, drilling on BLM has been around a lot longer than Trump or his cronies have been running things. This is nothing new - all BLM land is subject to these 'threats'.
  • 49 204
flag RedBurn (Jan 27, 2020 at 10:38) (Below Threshold)
 Fckin democrats
  • 39 11
 I didnt vote for the guy but that's not what happened. Stop abusing current laws and get people in that pass new laws for "irrigation channels" and "intermittent streams." Clean water act was developed for "navigable waterways." This is exactly why executive branch agencies shouldn't have this much unmitigated power.
  • 9 4
 @MikeyMT: correct
  • 105 8
 @NoahColorado: same guy who thinks wind mills are cancer causing evils and that we should revived the coal industry...

FUN FACT - Arby's employs more people than the entire coal industry.
Not McDonald, or Burger King or Wendy's...fooking Arby's
  • 10 115
flag owlie (Jan 27, 2020 at 10:51) (Below Threshold)
 Is that federal land? then STFU
  • 65 14
 @MikeyMT: Exactly....and these comments sho the typical PB ignorance. This particular parcel has been designated/approved as a potential lease site since 2008. Long before Trump was in office.
  • 24 12
 ::Rabble, Rabble, Rabble:: insert pitchfork shake> insert torch waggle> ::Rabble, Rabble, Rabble::
  • 105 39
 While I don't like that the place they are possibly drilling is a great mountain bike trail. With that being said, having the US oil independent rather dependent on Middle East is a good thing. US prices ($2.79) for gas are very low comparably to the rest of developed countries. Most are $5.00+/gallon. Hong Kong is $8.70/gallon. The US is one of the cleanest countries in the world for air and water. Look at waqu.info.

Unless you drive an electric vehicle and don't use natural gas to heat your home or water, don't mountain bike (mountain biking equipment uses lots of fossil fuels to make) then can't really say much. It is ironic to me, that the other article about Dark Fest on PB shows tons of plowing dirt to build big jumps just for a contest, but not a word about the environment.
  • 10 1
 @owlie: does federal land mean it's not protected? it sounds like this is a transaction selling federal land to private enterprise.
  • 32 1
 @tacklingdummy: agree with "having the US oil independent", but in the sense of decreasing the dependence on oil at all through relying more on the renewable energy sources.
  • 68 13
 What I'm wondering is why America invests in oil at all anymore. We all know it's finite and environmentally costly - shouldn't they be leading the charge in the future? That's how you got to be great...by making convenience better/cheaper. Sticking with oil isn't better or cheaper (renewables are free energy minus cost of maintenance).
  • 38 17
 Why would you blame Trump for this? The patch is the patch and as long as there’s a little gas in the ground someone’s always going to be poking holes to get it. Doesn’t matter who’s sitting in that fancy oval office
  • 32 3
 @meepmurp: Nothing is free. Read the article in the link below about our growing addiction to lithium ion batteries and the current and future potential environmental impacts of that. Not a pretty picture.

www.wired.co.uk/article/lithium-batteries-environment-impact
  • 32 28
 The bloke is economy crazed and disputes every scientific, intelligent fact to bolster his country's ego.
  • 24 11
 @mikebike69: Yes, BLM allowing drilling is a common occurrence, but Trump’s policies-or rather just removing protections since he hasn’t actually introduced anything new-certainly set up conditions that are very favorable for anyone who wants to drill.
  • 16 25
flag Boondocker390 (Jan 27, 2020 at 12:10) (Below Threshold)
 @meepmurp: unfortunately the cost of maintenance and production of renewable energy resources is absurd and the net energy from the amount of money invested is awful compared to natural gas and oil, but oil is a finite resource and we can't keep counting on it to power our lives. Renewable energy is a short term solution to a long term problem.
  • 28 1
 @MikeyMT: extractive use is one of the many important roles the BLM plays. Where things become an issue is when the director gets fired, William Perry Pendly (who has made his career as an attorney trying to dismantle the BLM) gets appointed as deputy director (appointing him as director would require a confirmation, which would never happen) and he proceeds to dismantle the Washington office. Everyone gets sent home to regional offices, except him, and lobbyists for oil and gas. We all need gas. I use it every day. We also need a places worth driving too. Anyone who thinks public lands are a partisan issue probably doesn’t realise those lands belong to them and their kids. One side is selling them, the other side doesn’t want to let you use them. Read.
  • 36 27
 @maffy: Please don't mistake his ego for the country's. He lost the popular vote by 3 million...he does not represent most of the country,
  • 15 1
 @LexB: So not only is my smartphone assembled by child slave labor in an Asian country but the battery is mined in the Congo by child slave laborers who also get toxic cobalt poisoning. Humans are amazing.
  • 29 3
 This actually isn't true, they rolled back Obama era regulation that deemed wetlands and creeks formed during heavy rain events protected by the EPA. This regulation mostly affected farmers and basically meant if you had a field that held water in the spring after snow melt and rainfall the EPA could deem it a wet land and you wouldn't be able to farm it. This is a simple example but it's not as much of a blow to environmental protection as you would be lead to believe. In reality it shifts more control to local government and less to the EPA, this is good or bad depending on who you talk to.
  • 9 1
 @tacklingdummy: Unfortunately I don't think the US wants to be oil independent, we've had interest in Middle East oil production since the beginning along with all the other empires. We've developed their oil production and maintain interest to keep the trade channels open and keep a military presence in strategic locations.
  • 9 9
 @Boondocker390: It was for both Obama era regulations AND clean air and water acts dating back to early 70s. IF it were just the former, you could just explain it by his hate for Obama and trying to undo anything done by Obama.
  • 7 3
 @ReformedRoadie: Arby's must employee all those people just to eat their food! I mean, who eats at Arby's? I'm convinced Arby's is a front for money laundering!
  • 6 3
 @ReformedRoadie: no it wasn't. This is fear mongering at it's finest.
  • 5 1
 @friendlyfoe: It's sad but there doesn't see to be a natural resource we can discover that we can't mess up somehow. Unless renewable energy solutions and their back end waste and RECYCLING becomes profitable no solution or solutions will fix the problems we humans have on this planet. WE are unsustainable.

Here is another eye opener about our ability to screw something up. I'll shut up after this.

www.bbc.com/future/article/20191108-why-the-world-is-running-out-of-sand
  • 17 12
 Yes! There will always be one moron that blames everything on Trump! The drilling prospecting on BLM has been around for decades... do your research!
  • 10 2
 All this finger pointing is kinda a waste of time. Forget whos at fault. Forget what happened in the past. Moving forward, the best way to preserve the trail is the crowdfunding to buy out the land usage rights.

We all use oil, and its important to modern life. We all (except @Protour, peace be upon him) love mountain biking. If we really say that certain recreational areas are more important than oil, then lets put our money where our mouth is.

I'll be watching this closely, and if its needed, I'll donate to the crowdfunding buyout.
  • 5 7
 @Slabrung @meepmurp : The fact is there isn't demand for alternative energy sources. Renewable energy is more expensive right now. Putting 22K solar panels on a 1500sqft house would take roughly 20 years to pay off.

Also, how many people are choosing to drive electric cars versus gas cars/trucks?
  • 7 5
 @goldmund: Obama was not interested in being oil independent. Trump has definitely been pushing for the US to be oil independent.
  • 14 17
 @KingsleyH: When it comes to environmental policies that will harm is in the future you can blame Trump. He is actively trying to sell everything out at every level and has no concerns about the future. Every one of his appointees has worked to weaken environmental regulations and the he's essentially trying to destroy the EPA from within. This type of governing is eco suicide.

www.environmentalintegrity.org/trump-watch-epa/whos-running-trumps-epa
  • 12 2
 Just for the sake of facts, these parcels originally opened up in 2008 as a result of BLM policy change, not as part of Trump's Energy Dominance plan. Additionally, the clean water policies just got changed were ones that ambiguously defined "navigable waters" as protected. Under the previous interpretations of the law, things like seasonal irrigation ditches created and used by farmers were deemed protected. The recent "rollbacks" were designed to provide greater clarity for landowners and government agencies responsible for enforcement.
  • 13 2
 Non of them give a f%#k. Doesn’t matter who you voted for or what side of politics you are on.
  • 1 0
 None. My bad.
  • 9 2
 @ReformedRoadie: you do understand there is a huge issue with the disposal of windmill blades at the current moment, right? 247wallst.com/energy-economy/2019/11/19/a-new-problem-for-clean-energy-dealing-with-old-windmill-blades
  • 20 7
 Sheeple blaming Trump for this are plain misinformed. Powerade is much better for you than kool-aid. Quote: BLM now offers virtually any parcel nominated by industry on lands that are deemed open under drilling-friendly resource management plans adopted in 2008.

Oh shit who was prez in 2008?
Don't like this shit? Vote local first.
  • 8 0
 @chrismac: leasing
Under the guidelines set in 2008
  • 14 23
flag jwdenver (Jan 27, 2020 at 14:27) (Below Threshold)
 Trump - good president or great president?
  • 1 1
 @chrismac: That's not what this is.
  • 13 6
 @mobil1syn: Windmills always have been and always will be an absolute disaster. In most areas they only supply a tiny amount of actual grid power used, cannot replace nuclear/gas fired plants as they are not reliable, and only exist due to huge subsidies from you and me.

The government took our money, paid companies to put them up, gave them insane contracts for guaranteed $$ per kw/h, more than 5 times what is paid for normal energy production, and within 25 years they all need to be taken back down.

Don't get me started on windmills.
  • 5 3
 @tacklingdummy: actually the demand is rising very fast, and setting up a new renewable energy production plant is usually cheaper then a fossil fuel based powerhouse. These technologies are rapidly becoming cheaper and more efficient, even despite the actions of the big money lobbying for the fossil fuel energy.
  • 20 20
 Preach to your local Mericans. The rest of the world has known his a racist,idiot,cheat and clown. But you people call him President.
  • 10 0
 @owlie: Stop using basic logic and facts to form your opinion. It’s not well received these days.
  • 9 8
 @friendlyfoe: the entire renewable energy section is a joke and government subsidy disaster. it is easy for people to be against drilling because 'oil companies are bad' but i will take drilling over covering moab with windmills and solar panels.

leasing blm land isnt anything new. they lease it for cattle, geothermal, solar, wind, farming, etc. the mtbs can thank their stars people hike in moab, so all the tree huggers will back them even if it means the OHV groups still get access. in the deserts, the OHVers get locked out all the time.
  • 7 1
 @tacklingdummy: the nation cutting back its petroleum consumption as a whole would aid immensely in being energy independent.
  • 15 1
 @LexB: Please stop using logic and common sense. Much easier to just point the finger at Trump and then go do shuttles in your pickup truck.
  • 6 1
 @pcledrew: True, but right now there isn't anything economically better, so people are not changing. Solar is decent but expensive. Electric cars are more expensive and have costs associated with setting up home with a charging station. Only reason why electric cars have sold a little better is because taxpayers fronting the bill for the big rebates (15-20K) which are soon to expire soon. Majority of people won't pay a lot more for cars to be eco-friendly.

To me, people shouldn't point the finger unless they themselves have greatly changed their lifestyle to cut out the use fossil fuels. Actions are greater than words.
  • 10 7
 @meepmurp: Hi, in case you didn't know this, our government doesn't give a F what we the people think or want. Public opinion is never consulted or considered for public policy.... Our gov is for the rich, by the rich, just like our founding fathers designed...the moth** f**kers.
  • 13 2
 @friendlyfoe: that's simply not true. Unsubsidized wind and solar in US are both already cheaper than coal and the same or cheaper than gas depending on location. In some sunnier parts of the US even solar + energy storage is cheaper than fossil.

energyinnovation.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Historical-Mean-LCOE-Values.jpg
  • 11 21
flag 26aintdeadyet (Jan 27, 2020 at 16:08) (Below Threshold)
 @MikeyMT: The blm isn’t run by the government it run by the US department of the interior. You liberals need to get a grip on what’s real and what isn’t. I get that trump isn’t perfect but name one president that was. No one is perfect and you snowflakes need to look at each side before you open your pie holes.
  • 10 1
 Who rides slick rock more than once anyway? Shit sucks compared to most everything else there. Too soon?
  • 8 1
 @tacklingdummy: I'm with you! One only has to look at the debacle that Canada is currently facing and the "lets get our oil elsewhere and let our economy and our people suffer" mentality. Living in Alberta (not that it makes a difference) it seems absolutely asinine that many of our own Canadian people are fighting progress at home and support the import of foreign Middle Eastern oil.
  • 7 1
 Meanwhile in Davos, Trump is all "where the fukk is Moab?"
  • 4 2
 Sounds like it’s going to be Hydraulic Fracking type of oil extraction too. Get ready for your tap water to taste oily when visiting trials in Moab

www.moabsunnews.com/opinion/article_56769410-3e19-11ea-b9c9-0bea16633605.html
  • 2 0
 @dthomp325: in Ontario Canada which has a huge wind farm boom residents are paying 130 per mwh due to government subsidies.
www.windontario.ca

In a subsidized environment the limited production and unreliability also means that since it can't be trusted we still have to build just as many power plants as without wind. So you just end up paying for expensive power for no real benefit.

How many regions in the USA are there where unsubsidized wind power is profitable at 45$?
  • 1 0
 Good to hear.........
  • 4 2
 @tacklingdummy: people aren’t pointing any fingers. Being opposed to developing a region known for its recreational appreciation isn’t finger pointing.
  • 5 0
 @Backyardtrailbuilder: did...did it, offend you, when they said those things? Because you sure sound offended.
  • 9 3
 @ReformedRoadie: You do realize that those 3 million were all in California right? This is why the Electorial College elects the President, not just the states of California or New York. If you don't like this, have the constitution amended.
  • 5 1
 @friendlyfoe: I agree, but windmills get votes because they sell the dream, not accomplish it.
  • 3 0
 @meepmurp: Following the supply chain because renewables are not free energy. Ask yourself why is China the world leader in solar panel manufacturing?
  • 3 0
 @nocker: Exactly, I'm not in favour of anyone! I just support conservation and clean energy, doing what is best for the enviroment and for the future of outdoor sports including MTB is my dig!
  • 1 0
 @owlie: LOL, exactly!
  • 5 3
 @k2rider1964: Doesn't change the fact that the current administration is gutting air, land and water protections as well as opening up more public land to extraction.
  • 2 0
 @Douger-1: Sorry. I find myself being a bit of a practical doomsayer sometimes, but some of the solutions people laud just aren’t the silver bullets they want them to be. They all have their own set of issues many of which no one has even started to think about solutions for. Only how to make money. Not how to clean up the mess afterward.

I see people talking about wind now. Read this and tell me how great wind is when the materials being used are so strong they can’t even really be reclaimed and repurposed effectively yet.

www.npr.org/2019/09/10/759376113/unfurling-the-waste-problem-caused-by-wind-energy
  • 4 0
 @Boondocker390: You’re missing some facts there. Not just any little wet area on a farm can be considered a wetland. These can take 50 or more years to develop and have very specific soil types, plant life, and water that feeds an ecosystem. There’s no way the rain events have anything to do with the deregulation. That’s just a poor excuse to be irresponsible with the environment.

One should understand that water from said farms and other areas go to tributaries of our waterways. The Clean Water Act was developed to protect ditches, streams, and navigable waterways. As an engineering consultant that works with clients everyday to assure EPA compliance with the Clean Water Act on large construction projects, it’s clear that the impact will be real with the recent deregulation. We need clean drinking water, and our many ecosystems certainly appreciate it.
  • 2 0
 @owlie: George Bush
  • 9 1
 @tacklingdummy: We have so much oil in play from US sources right now that we've become a major *exporter* of it.

If we were concerned about taking care of ourselves and not needing to lean on the middle east, we'd leave some of what we have in the ground until it's needed.

But that's not what's happening. This isn't about energy independence. This is just greed.
  • 5 2
 @sinatorj: you do realize only 130 million out of the 328 million showed up to vote? That means less than 1/5 people voted for the idiot.
  • 5 3
 @mobil1syn: How do you have the audacity to call renewable energy a disaster when the defining accomplishment of the oil industry has been to lie and mislead the public, on the most important issue the human race ever faced?

www.greenpeace.org/usa/global-warming/exxon-and-the-oil-industry-knew-about-climate-change/exxons-climate-denial-history-a-timeline
  • 5 3
 @ButtermilkBar: his exact words were a government subsidy disaster. Most of the green applications you see are only profitable with huge subsidies and end up supplying a comparably small amount of our power needs.

The requirements of the energy grid are for constantly varying degrees of output. So nuclear is incredibly efficient but not flexible to increasing/decreasing demand. Nat gas/coal are way less efficient but output can be changed incredibly quickly to match demand. Hydro is the best for efficiency and varying output but only available in some places.

Green energy is neither. It doesn't deliver consistent output, nor can it vary to meet demand. So if you build a ton of green energy but still end up with the exact same number of power plants, with green energy only replacing a marginal amount of output, is it really worth billions of dollars in subsidies?
  • 9 2
 @friendlyfoe: Your worried about billions in subsidies? America has completely wasted over a combined $3,000,000,000,000 in the middle east wars since 9/11 in what was essentially a subsidy to the military/industrial/oil complex, with the result creating more terrorism and chaos. Not to mention the unnecessary loss of lives.

Imagine if Al Gore had been elected president instead and started the transformation to a green economy with all that money instead of lying us into disaster. Considering the consequences of climate change, cost should have never even been part of the conversation, it's just another weak excuse that the deniers use to maintain the status quo and keep us on oil.
  • 7 7
 @mikebike69: because trump is all about short term profit for himself and his planet killing cronies. Be assured we are headed for extinction and trump is at the helm of the ship taking us there.
  • 7 10
 @GatoGordo: easy there.... country that re elected president blackface. Your guy is no saint. Worse for your economy too. But he’s a social justice warrior, despite his black face fetish, and it’s really cool to hate trump. Famous people hate Trump so everyone else should too. It’s the in thing to do!
  • 7 3
 @mark4444: Actually... Scotland produced more than 182% of its total household energy needs (4.4 million homes) though its wind turbines in the first half of 2019. And Portugal has produced in excess of 100% of its electricity needs from pure renewables several times over the last 4 years. Windmills are indeed feasible as is solar and waves and tidal too.
  • 3 2
 @tacklingdummy: our energy independence has absolutely jack and shit to do with drilling in our own country. It’s is 100% about money. That is just dumb line used to drum up support for drilling in protected lands.
  • 1 0
 @ReformedRoadie: Most of the country is divided, everybody I've met in the USA thinks the nation is God incarnate or a hellhole and everybody's angry about it, at a time when America should be unifying, they're proving how divided they are. He does not represent most of the country, indeed, but in turn for their existence in the union, states like Wyoming are permitted to vote for him in the electoral college, the popular vote doesn't matter, the college is there to give small states a say. So, the system is neccessary, honestly the states are probably capable of making good environmental laws, most just don't.
  • 1 2
 @5afety3rd: I know it's impolite to ask but, did you vote for HRC?
  • 3 0
 @LexB: I think you are spot on. Nothing is for free and most don't take the time to look past the next new shiny object and actually dig into all the downstream ramifications. I'm all for better, more efficient, and cleaner ways to produce energy but I like you understand there is a bit more to things that what is merely marketed and sold in the media and by the politicians.
  • 5 0
 @DanMilner: You probably have a misunderstanding of how the wind supply curve doesn't meet the energy demand curve. (and renewables in general). Without a means to store massive amounts of energy in order to balance supply with demand, all renewables require fossil backup. And when the wind oversupplies the grid, it forces the grid operators to turn off other sources of power (which makes them more inefficient $/kw) and rates go negative which means the wind generators have to pay the grid to take their un-needed energy (which makes them more expensive on a ($/kw) basis. Being forced to take energy when it isn't need also makes the grid unstable.
www.zmescience.com/science/scotland-to-reach-this-year-100-renewable-energy-goal
Per the above article, which also sites the "182% wind number" it seems that Scotland is on course for "100% renewable energy balance" this year. Good for them. Very few countries have the right location & geography to balance tidal, geothermal, hydro, solar, and wind in order to balance varying sources into a portfolio where supply = demand. I still bet a lot of that power has non-renewable backup. Is it cost effective??? paylesspower.com/blog/european-cost-of-electricity-per-kwh-by-country
The UK has one of the higher electricity rates in Europe and per the above article the rate is nearly 50% more than what America pays for electricity. To each there own.
  • 2 2
 @RedBurn: f*cken foreigners
  • 4 1
 @dthomp325: Yeah, it appears a few comments on here are from people that have an agenda or are misinformed. Wind and solar are competitive now and will continue to get cheaper. Storage options can be competitive and are getting significantly cheaper. Once storage gets a bit cheaper or grid technology advances to better align demand with supply, there will be an even more fundamental change our energy supply. EVs can also complement solar and wind quite well. There is a reason power companies like Xcel have announce 100% carbon free energy by 2050, because they know it is feasible and the transition has already started.

The only thing that can stop the transition is regulation, and unfortunately the industries that will be disrupted are some of the richest ...and they have deep pockets
  • 1 0
 @Dropthedebt: It's difficult to pick between a rock and hard place, we all make decisions we don't want to. It's better than not deciding though, like the 70 million registered voters who didn't show up. Our system here is severely flawed, the people don't think their voice matters, therefore it doesn't.
  • 6 1
 @LexB:

Excellent point Lex. What the hell will be do with millions upon millions of LI batteries? We have all the well intentioned people who really want to save this planet! They react to headlines all while driving "solo" to work in a giant SUV, enjoying a supersized coffee in a throw away cup, enjoying the latest Iphone all while the old one will end up being buried, and eating 1/2 hamburgers and disposing of all the waste the 7-11. Get home at night to home #1 (3000 sq ft) nicely heated or air conditioned year round, only to head up to Tahoe for home #2, 2000 sq ft most empty attempt to satisfy the need to feel important. Oh, they cleared 1/4 and acre to have this home. Get out the jet skis on the weekend have you, and get the full container of trash ready for the Tahoe landfill as it was a great party weekend, and don't forget to set the hot tub back to 68'! Fill that SUV (With you Bernie Sticker on back) with 30 gallons of premium fuel cause Audi recommends it, and smile when you get home to see the Tesla parked next to your new Yeti and Ibis Ripmo carbon bikes that will soon be buried for the latest iteration of the Specialized Enduro cause it's just that much better than the last one. How dare they drill for my SUV oil. I have a TESLA!
  • 4 2
 @laksboy: well said. I wonder if people who think wind is a cost effective solution in anywhere but a handful of places would be willing to put up with rolling blackouts when they don't meet demand.
  • 3 2
 @LexB: Irresponsible consumption of any resource is an issue. It is good to list the negative side effects of things like wind so people know what they are dealing with...if you want to be fair...you should also mention the negative side effects of coal and oil.
  • 7 4
 Wow, some of these comments are the most ignorant things I've read in a long time.

1st- This was a designated sight since OBAMA was in office!
2nd- As someone that works in the powerplant industry I understand the facts, and the facts are this. Energy independence is vital to our economy, our infrastructure etc. Renewable energy will NEVER, let me repeat that, NEVER replace oil and Gas it's just not going to happen. The only hope of supplying the amount of power needed would be through Nuclear energy, which we have pretty much made it impossible for new sights using nuclear energy. So, please stop touting renewable energy as our saviour. Do you know all the horrible environmental impacts of the battery made for your electric vehicle? Or the training and PPE required to work on it? And then when we have millions of electric cars with millions of Failed batteries, where do you think those will end up? Sheesh, please people, do some research from someone that is actually on the ground as these politicians and media have a nice way of spinning these things, but we live in reality.
  • 2 2
 @mobil1syn: While you are being so noble, would you please talk about the negative sides of oil/gas/coal and those industries? Just a few easy ones for you to start with...coal ash, air pollution, water pollution, wars, oil spills, coal mining impacts, oil drilling/extraction equipment, oil refining sites, (and disposing of them when they are no longer used), transporting of oil/gas across nation and world (and disposal of the equipment used for transport...i.e. tanker ships, trucks, pipelines, trains, drilling rigs).
  • 2 6
flag michibretz (Jan 28, 2020 at 10:21) (Below Threshold)
 @MikeyMT @gdnorm @k2rider1964 did you guys read the article? till the end?

Quote: "The leases come as part of Trump's Energy Dominance plan that saw him pull out of the Paris Climate agreement, open up new land for leasing and cut the red tape that prevented the construction of energy infrastructure such as pipelines."
  • 1 1
 President's do not make these decisions, money does. It would not matter who sits in the seat of "no power". They are just salespeople. Doing what they are told and get rich rewards for doing so. Go in poor, come out extremely wealthy and buy a beachfront house for $12mil. Go in rich, come out richer.
  • 1 2
 And what point do you think, another president will give a fu**? This is business.. money money money.. this is what all the president gonna think about.
  • 2 0
 @5afety3rd: I get that, it's the same here. Be safe in the knowledge whoever you vote for, the Government wins.
  • 7 0
 @retep1: Absolutely. All of my posts have just been pointing out how EVERY possible choice has negatives whether people realize it or not. That's not to say oil, gas, and coal are suddenly the best choice. I just think people need to stop fooling themselves that these other options are somehow going to fix things. When I read that article about lithium ion batteries it made me feel ill. How many batteries have been dumped in the ground already? How many will be there in the next 20 years. The waste stream needs to be defined and enforced if that's possible. I'm no better than anyone else, so I hope I don't come off as if I'm preaching. We're all on board together.
  • 1 0
 @ReformedRoadie: So that's why their curly fries are so delicious! They are hand crafted curled.
  • 1 0
 @cb7: They are not a front for good food!! So your theory is plausible!!
  • 4 0
 @ButtermilkBar: Wait, cost should not be a consideration? In what world do you exist that things are "free"? Cost has everything to do with it because it's an ECONOMY.
  • 4 1
 @DanMilner: Just to be clear, you're not trying to compare the scale or the demand of the US with the Scotland and Portugal, right?
  • 4 0
 @friendlyfoe: We have the same BS here in Norway. Lots of taxmonies being funneled into energycompanies as subsidies for "green power" and not a single krone profit being led back to Norway. All profits disappear abroad in a maze of shell companies and so forth.
Not to mention the destruction of wildlife and nature.
F..k them Windturbines.
Ask WAKIDESIGNS how the view is when driving down south in his Country.
And now we have a government that signs away our waterfalls to foreign companies based in the EU.
Eff ACER, NORTH CONNECT, EU, EEC and especially all the bureacrays in Brussels.
  • 2 1
 @meepmurp: “They” was telling 40 years ago that we’d all have easier lives and work less hours through technological advances , utter bullshit . We are worker ants for giant corporations that will eventually consume ourselves to a desert , IF the likes off Trump get there’re way ! If China go green the world will have to follow !
  • 1 0
 @robnow: I believe it is our Equinor that is behind some of the Oil sand projects in your province?
Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
But I remember a lot of Protests against then Statoil going into Oil sand refinement. Both domestic and foreign.
  • 4 0
 @DanMilner: Look at where those windturbines are actually placed. And then look at where Norwegian and Swedish windturbines are placed.
Not all "green" power is truly green.
  • 1 0
 @Matt115lamb: Actually, number of hours worked has steadily declined for most people and most major industries. Most goods and services (with some notable exceptions) have declined in price when you measure price as hours worked to obtain.

ourworldindata.org/working-hours
  • 1 0
 @hamncheez: possibly true but with wages stagnating a family can’t survive on one income ! The wage gap between workers and bosses is get bigger annually , someone doing the same job was better off 10yrs ago with the bosses racking it in !
  • 3 0
 @Matt115lamb: I support my family while my wife stays home with the kids. I nearly dropped out of high school twice, and dropped out of college twice, but I have a decent job.

I'm not saying its utopia out there, but I think some optimism is warranted.
  • 2 0
 @hamncheez: meanwhile I’m single and no kids and require to have roommates to even afford to put a roof over my head. Life is different for everyone
  • 2 0
 @5afety3rd: hey, different stages of life. For most of my twenties I earned less than $10,000 a year.
  • 4 0
 @hamncheez: The article you linked says nothing about goods being easier to obtain per hour worked.

In truth though, for most things since the mid 80's (which is the year the Canadian consumer price index is tied to) the rate of inflation is below the average increase in wages. The one exception to this is the cost to purchase a house which has doubled. We know why this is too, in BC alone there is 5-10 billion dollars of illegal money being laundered annually into real estate, and this has affected rent prices as well. If you live anywhere on the west coast or for that matter in just about any state that has a metropolis you are affected by this. For most people below the average national income, rent makes up more than half of their monthly income. This means it doesn't really matter if other goods are more or less expensive since you are what they call house poor.

This is without taking into account the growing wage gap which there is little relevant information on as most statistics are computed based on average income.
  • 1 0
 @friendlyfoe: Its an easy google search: www.cnbc.com/2014/01/29/-wage-stagnationcommentary.html

Housing is one of the "notable exceptions" I alluded to in my original comment. The rise in housing costs is partially explained by a dramatic rise in housing quality- if you instead measure by square footage per person, housing costs remain pretty flat. Other things that affect housing costs is the modern urbanization of society. We are in the mist of the greatest migration in human history, starting around 1900, of people moving out of rural areas and into cities. Rural areas are seeing massive depopulation. Real Estate can only grow upwards in cities, so with a fixed supply and increased demand of course you'll see a rise in price.

What 'wage gap' are you referring to?
  • 2 1
 @hamncheez: I'm referring to there being less middle income jobs with more people falling either below 50k or above 100

That article is also full of so much garbage bias. Such as this gem "Research shows that economic freedom fosters innovation and progress". It's that same progress that increases gdp, through automation and technology, but forces more middle class workers into low income jobs. Just like falling unemployment doesn't mean anything if everyone is having to take minimum wage jobs.
  • 3 0
 @projectnortheast: Yep. People think windmills and solar will be able to power the world. However, it is just not logistically possible. The world has enormous energy needs and to fuel those needs, solar and wind power just won't be able to provide enough power.

The majority of the population around the world are in dense big metropolitan areas. Where are those areas going to put enough windmills and solar panels to provide enough power? Think New York, LA, Tokyo, Shanghai, etc. Also, some areas just don't logistically have enough sun or wind to fuel those power sources. Currently, nuclear power is the only viable energy resource to provide the needs, unless a better renewable energy is invented.
  • 4 1
 @friendlyfoe: But that isn't what economic data shows. Starting in the 1800s, global income distribution looked like a bell curve. Pretty standard. Then some Western countries adopted economic freedom and industrialization, and rapidly became far wealthier than the rest of the world. Fast forward 100 years and global income distribution looks like a two humped camel. That created the "wage gap" you are referring to. Those lucky enough to be born in a free market, capitalist economy tend to end up in the higher income hump, those born in command economies or undeveloped agrarian economies tended to end up in the lower income hump, with a big gulf in the middle. Most of humanity throughout history were dirt poor. Once you introduce free markets those economies rapidly raise their incomes, with nothing in-between. Hence the camel humps.

Luckily, as more countries embraced capitalism, the world as of about 10 years ago entered the "single camel hump" income distribution, and now the gulf or valley of income distribution has ended, as the world gets richer and global poverty is projected to end completely in a decade or so

ourworldindata.org/uploads/2019/10/Global-inequality-in-1800-1975-and-2015.png
  • 94 14
 What does your fancy Tacoma truck use ? No matter where it's done oil extraction is always a shitty deal for the environment. Buy hey just don't do it in my back yard. Do it where I can't see it and pretend everything is great.
  • 16 2
 Yeah and what do all the atvs, jeeps, and dirt bikes run on that are all in this exact same area....
  • 36 5
 I get your point, but not everybody is able to opt out of every product or service related to ecological degradation & climate change.

We need individual actions, but we need systemic change as well.
  • 12 22
flag Floho (Jan 27, 2020 at 11:22) (Below Threshold)
 And thats why real Bikers RIDE to the trailhead. Shuttling is really useless, from my standpoint at least. I guess all is a bit different for you north americans, but I've rarely seen anyone actually shuttle in europe, apart from the odd mass shuttle bikepark, which transports 30 bikes, and not 3 bikes like the rad dudes in their rad trucks.
  • 4 2
 So right! Currently the US consumes about 3 million barrels of oil per day more than it produces.The US is by far the highest worldwide consumer of oil, though China is second and consumes almost 9 million barrels more than it produces per day. The US is also the highest consumer for Chinese exports.

www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=709&t=6
  • 5 2
 @Floho: So it's ok to drive to the destination you are going to ride but then once you are in that place you shuttling is too much?
  • 6 9
 @Sshredder, Yeah, totally agree. Unless you are driving electric car, not using natural gas to heat your house and water, and not even mountain biking (mountain bike equipment uses a lot of fossil fuels to make) then people can't really say much.
  • 3 1
 @weezyb: Well first of all, yes, there is a significant difference between driving on the streets vs driving up shuttle roads but you're right, from an ecological standpoint, driving the car to ride a bike is always a bit questionable. But for me, thats not even a problem. The nearest two bikeparks to my hometown, one of them being Schladming Bikepark, are easily accessible by train in under two hours, and the nearest DH track is just 20 away by regional bus. So for me personally, I can gladly live my mtb life without a car at all.
  • 9 1
 I think reasonable people can agree that this miniscule part of Utah is way more valuable economically for tourism than mineral extraction.
  • 12 2
 @tacklingdummy: why? I don't get this all or nothing approach. Even if I don't give all my money to the poor, it doesn't mean I can't help a friend. Even if someone for whatever reason drives a car with a combustion engine, it doesn't mean he can't push for cleaner solutions on a higher level.
  • 2 1
 @tacklingdummy: you forgot home heating oil. It’s still very much a thing in the northeast.
  • 3 2
 @Floho: truth hurts, hence the downvotes
  • 5 8
 Electric vehicles are charged using fuel from coal/gas plants. Same as your phone/iPad/computer you are using to view / type on Pinkbike. Same as the lights in your house, especially if you use electric heating or air conditioning.

But, Orange Man Bad. >:-(
  • 4 4
 @Slabrung: Because pointing the finger at someone else when that person hasn't done much to change their lifestyle or make is difference is very hypocritical. Some of the biggest leaders of climate change are the biggest consumers of fossil fuels and biggest carbon footprints. Musk and Bezos have rocket companies using tons of fossil fuels. Greta travels in a gigantic carbon fiber boat. DiCaprio has a gigantic yacht. Many of them flying in private jets to a ton of climate change rallies and speaking engagements. The irony is funny to me.
  • 3 4
 @tacklingdummy: but at least they are doing something, which is always better than doing nothing. Also I would bet that at least some of their choices are more sustainable than those of their peers. I don't think this is funny or ironic.
  • 2 1
 @tacklingdummy: How do you define your approach? Would you say you are using the straw man or the red herring approach?
  • 1 2
 @retep1: Neither. If you use a lot of fossil fuels and not changing your carbon footprint, it is hypocritical to call out people to change their habits. It is the "do as I say, not as I do" mentality. It is like the meat eater that tells all meat eaters they have to go vegetarian. People need to look at themselves on how they can reduce their carbon footprint before telling anyone else to do the same.
  • 56 8
 Everyone complaining while driving a pickup truck the size of a celestial body ...
  • 16 14
 While using their phones made of plastic (oil), and wearing their Patagonia jackets made of Gore-tex (oil), etc. There is a balance needed with everything.
  • 23 2
 @MikeyMT: If you're going to try and make that point, the mining and processing for the rare earth metals and other elements used in your phone are your heavy hitters; the plastics are a near zero contributor. But he's from Switzerland... Have you been there? Traveled there? Their public transportation is painfully convenient, functional, and relatively inexpensive. Some public passes even come with free use of the local ski lifts, and some of the ski hills make use of the public transportation as part of their trail network access. It's beautifully integrated. Hiking, biking, or skiing in Gstaad and not taking public transportation is kinda silly unless you're the type of person who also has access to helicopters. Also, everyone knows where plastic comes from (we don't need the explanatory brackets like you're revealing some big secret).
  • 29 3
 “You criticize society yet you participate in society. I am very smart”
  • 2 1
 @MikeyMT: Mountain biking equipment is made with a lot of fossil fuels as well.
  • 10 3
 @tacklingdummy: your mountain bike apparently is ridden by a fossil fool
  • 3 0
 but but but i need my pickup truck so i can have one of the fox head tailgate protectors
  • 3 0
 @browner: Those are tailgate protectors are freaking convenient as hell...
  • 51 16
 My country Australia is on fire. And the fires are not a joke they are huge. Global warming is real and it will totally effect you and your life. You need to join political parties and make changes. , being a keyboard warrior is no longer enough.
  • 33 35
 can you tell me about the 200ish arsonists that have been arrested/investigated? or the 'green' policy that has stopped landowners from doing controlled burns, in the winter, to create firebreaks that would stop this kind of thing happening?
  • 28 38
flag KJmtbr (Jan 27, 2020 at 12:05) (Below Threshold)
 Yeah Global Warming... let's not talk about the 180+ people in Australia that were arrested for arson related to the current fires = an Inconvenient Truth! 99+% of global fires are either man-made or naturally occurring from lightning, etc. Get over it!
  • 11 3
 @KJmtbr: you realize you just laid out the only two ways that a fire can start right? Not real sure what you point is here bud
  • 23 0
 @KJmtbr: @KJmtbr: I can tell you that 24 people were charged with deliberately starting bushfires. Not 200. The remaining charged for 'arson' as you say, were arrested for not following restrictions in place by total fire bans. This includes throwing a lit cigarette on the ground.

As for the Green's policy supposedly stopping hazard reduction burns - please tell me how a minority party who has never been in goverment can effect this policy? This conspiracy was largely started by Barnaby Joyce, a little research on him and you will find out all you need to know.

Here's the hot tip - don't believe every headline you read. A little critical thinking goes a long way Smile
  • 4 0
 Global warming? I'd much rather argue about some minor local facts and figures in the press than the broader point
  • 1 3
 @Baoas: Australia 3 tiers of government (way to much). Who controlled for the last 8 or so years the tier of Government at the local level in many of these fire effected areas?

Give you a hint, not the Farmers, Shooters Party.

Then they have the big 2 chasing down Green Votes and subscribing to the Carbon Tax everything they can mantra. Being one of the land and seeing that folk can't do basic common sense clean up of their properties to minimise the risk of fire - yeah - that's a problem. That and not taking on the recommendations of the Royal Commission into the Victorian Black Saturday Fires which were devastating on those communities and loss of life.

The country has developed under the practice of Fire Stick Farming for nigh on 40 thousand years - not minimising fire risk with some pro active forest and property management if Bone Headed in the extreme but, but think of da evil Carbon.......
  • 42 5
 But...her emails
  • 8 12
flag DrPete (Jan 27, 2020 at 12:24) (Below Threshold)
 One of the reasons we’d have been better off with a different nominee, yes. She would’ve been infinitely better than the current option, mind you, but there was a lot of baggage that kept people on the couch on Election Day.
  • 8 5
 @DrPete: Pretty sure the only real baggage society had was a second X chromosome. The rest was just excuses.
  • 31 5
 From the State that's still moderately on fire in Australia. Can we please agree that this probably isn't the answer
  • 9 0
 Maybe the goal is to get more water in order to quench the fires? Totally makes sense - things that are under water can't burn:
arstechnica.com/science/2020/01/as-sea-levels-rise-little-of-the-united-states-will-be-unaffected
Florida will be mostly safe!
  • 3 0
 @Slabrung: this is very unfortunate as we seemingly are the driving force of worldwide overconsumption. First it was dogs, shivering in the cold, then polar bears looking at open oceans, next will be people cheat deep in water. Good news is we will all be able to see it on our dozens of devices and make it go away for .39 cents a day
  • 16 0
 This is important, thanks for posting. We're not just talking about contaminating the viewshed.
  • 28 9
 When are the U.S. presidential elections again?
  • 72 13
 Not fucking soon enough
  • 20 53
flag makkelijk (Jan 27, 2020 at 10:37) (Below Threshold)
 @usedbikestuff: Trump will win easily, Murica deserves him. He embodies the country.
  • 6 33
flag RedBurn (Jan 27, 2020 at 10:38) (Below Threshold)
 @makkelijk: yes
  • 38 7
 @makkelijk: actually less than 50% of voters chose him.
  • 2 5
 @makkelijk: Or about 50% of it anyway...
  • 26 3
 @makkelijk: I take offense to that, I’ve never wished to be orange and am proud to say I’m happily married to my first wife.
  • 37 13
 @makkelijk: murica probably did vote for him. America did not. He definitely does not embody our country. What he does embody is the ignorant side of it, just like you do where you live.
  • 20 22
 Def need another leftist,...mfg jobs are never coming back Obama said...$5/gal is the new norm he said. Oh ok.
  • 13 12
 buckle up for a second term.
  • 6 0
 @ckcost: yeah, turnout as I recall was about 36%, so having gotten 50% of the vote he was elected by... just under 18% of the population.
  • 7 3
 @jrocksdh: where are all these manufacturing jobs? Have we decided to stop automating? You do realize jobs didn't go overseas...they went to robots.
  • 10 7
 @Fresh1: It's a measly 38% of the VOTING populace. Thank the slave trade era Electoral College for this nightmare where a candidate LOSES by 3 MILLION votes and somehow still gets to have his spray tans in the Oval Office.
  • 4 0
 @ReformedRoadie: where are most of the goods we buy manufactured again? Manufacturing absolutely has been shipped overseas because our sub-poverty minimum wage isn’t cheap enough.
  • 1 1
 @DrPete: It's both.
  • 8 6
 Anyone that has ever drunk coca cola, eaten a big mac, or been carpet bombed should legally be allowed to vote in the US elections.
  • 7 0
 @browner: sound logic. best get independence from the Empire quick then, before most of planet earth is allowed to vote in british elections.
  • 11 5
 @jrocksdh: We do, they aren't and he didn't. We are still currently enjoying the Obama recovery (see the straight upward line on pretty much any indicator that started a few months into 200Cool . US manufacturing has been in a mild recession for over a year, not surprisingly like most industries that like trump (see: $28 Billion bailout of farmers so far). The $5 gas comment is a complete misrepresentation of a Q/A session where he talked about factors that can cause gas price spikes. And here we are in another game of "But Obama!"

One more thing to (probably not) consider: Being wrong isn't as bad as continuing to be wrong.
  • 3 0
 @tobiusmaximum: let em vote, might produce a better result than the rest of the country being Shanghai'd by the South East. Plus they've all heard the Beatles so they are British citizens now.
  • 2 3
 @ckcost: I said "about" 50%. True statement though that it was only a segment of the VOTING public that selected him, and not the actual population. It would be interesting to see how well the voting population reflects the opinions of the remaining portion of it. I suspect that if 100% of the actual population voted though it would not have turned out different. Most non-voters tend to be the lower class, and the lower class tends to vote more republican.
  • 1 0
 @Fresh1: I was not replying to you or your statement, I was replying to the other guy so not sure why you are addressing me. My response even said "less than 50% of VOTERS". That said, I would dispute your assumption about the outcome if the entire population voted...... actually the facts dispute your assumption and non-voters lean democratic/independent by a good margin: www.people-press.org/2014/10/31/the-party-of-nonvoters-2
  • 2 2
 @usedbikestuff: All you keyboard warriors are in for a rude awakening come election time. WWG1WGA
  • 4 4
 @hubsession: I mean I am just embarrassed for republicans everywhere. Like this no talent orange ass-clown is the best candidate the party can cook up?
  • 1 0
 @ReformedRoadie: many in orange county, ca. friends mfg biz is doing very well(AL parts)
  • 17 3
 Last time round in Moab a long chat with the crew at Poison Spider - The Whole Enchiladas trail brings in $14Million in revenues annually. Saddens me that dirty money still wins. Cream and Scum rise to the top......
  • 6 4
 Whet I first read this my eyes skipped "a long chat with the crew at" and went straight to "Poison Spider"; and my brain instantly went to USE THE OIL TO BURN ALL THE SPIDERS.
  • 4 1
 @MartyFluxMcFly: Now that's a political platform I can get behind.
  • 4 0
 @MartyFluxMcFly: And deal with an explosion in the fly population??? Are you crazy??
  • 4 0
 @ReformedRoadie: You're with the fly lobby aren't you....
  • 2 0
 @sarahallen: I am clearly with the spiders...need to keep those flies in check.
  • 1 1
 @ReformedRoadie: If you're fast enough the flies can't catch you Wink But those spiders can get the drop on you like chuck norris on an E-bike.
  • 18 2
 Ah yes, more drilling for fossil fuels...exactly what we need right now.
  • 14 5
 Here we go again with the hypocritical ebb and flow of where Americans think we should get our oil. 'we shouldn't fight foreign wars for oil interest !' and, ' no, don't drill on that reserve or BLM land!' Come on, we use oil... that is a fact, and tourism in Moab uses a lot of oil, and not just on the shuttle up to the top of enchilada. I wonder if the 4x4 guys are going to be petitioning against drilling? I don't think I saw any electric cars with mountain bikes on the back last time I was in Moab.
  • 23 3
 How about "don't drill for oil in my drinking water aquifer"?
  • 8 3
 This is America. The 4x4 guys will totally protest drilling now that it’s in their backyard.
  • 6 1
 @ztahrens: It’s always someone’s backyard aquifer. That’s the problem.
  • 9 2
 @cougar797: I agree. In this case it's mine, so I'll do what I can.

The argument that anyone who's ever used a drop of gasoline can't want a better world is BS. While we point fingers and call each other hypocrites, the people getting rich off of climate inaction laugh all the way to the bank.
  • 2 1
 @ztahrens: Well just remember. We are way past people “now”. People in the past set this in action a long time ago. All we can do now is start sacrificing things we should have given up 20 years ago.
  • 2 1
 @ztahrens: Yeah oil companies love drilling water aquifers. That's where all the oil is anyway, right?
  • 1 2
 @jwrendenver: Thanks genius. Where'd you get your geology degree, Trump University?

Edit: The point is that the site is in close proximity to our aquifer, and the water is stored in fractured, porous sedimentary rocks. Thus there is a potential for contamination of ground water if drilling occurs.
  • 1 1
 @ztahrens: No, there is no potential. Get a clue!
  • 10 1
 If I understand correctly they are not doing the drilling on the Moab Slick Rock. They are going to drill sideways from land around it. So the Slick Rock remains unchanged. I live north of Denver where there are dozens of drill sites. Other than a few months of having a couple of acres of construction site. When the production well is in place there are a few sand brown tanks taking up a combined space about the size of a house and an access road. Doesn't seem horrible to me.
  • 5 1
 Sorry. I refuse to not panic.
  • 10 1
 PB going to talk about drilling in Canada? Nah, that wouldn’t make us look good or set the comments on fire. We will just keep talking about our southern neighbors to make ourselves feel better.
  • 1 0
 Username checks out.
  • 9 2
 Just wanted to point out something that I feel isn’t discussed enough. People are saying that lithium ion cells pollute to produce; that renewable energy sources aren’t worth it. Thing is, these energy sources and storage technologies haven’t had nearly as many years of research, funding and development as our more traditional fossil fuel systems. Give these modern eco-solutions 80 more years and I’m pretty sure they’d be obviously advantageous. Why have we not seen the same amount of progress when comparing oil & renewables? Because America’s top talent gets picked up by these companies stuck in their power hungry ways. Need to pay off your student debt/ start a family? Just become a petrol engineer and make bank. The point is that the problem has it’s roots spread under Adam & Eve’s tree. The system & our individual habits are feeding this vicious circle of musical chairs. And at the end the music stops playing.

Its easy to find a cause for the problem. What isn’t easy is facing the blatant truth. We’re all part of the problem. What does our job do for our community? Why did we chose to do this? The financial security and making others happy? Have our visions of a satisfied life been warped by consumerism? Am i ready to trade personal gain for a family of 8 billion people?


Capitalism, in it’s greediest forms, promotes short term gain. Go in, profit, get out and let the rest clean up. Ahem. Renewables also signify a menace to a business model that depends on a constant stream of cash; not on self-sufficiency in it’s various forms.

As mountain bikers, we’re nAtUraLly put in a situation where we look like hypocrites...but we know how genuine our connection to nature is, it helps us find a high. (actually loam) We have front row seats to this spectacle of might I say: The thrill of life VS. Sustainability

Sustainability isn’t the most exciting thing and I understand people who think life isn’t the time to worry about things beyond our control. (Aka humans being specs of nothingness in the universe) But showing a sign of respect to the planet also shows that you respect yourself. And that my friends is something to be proud of. Even after you die.

Feel free to stop reading; but these are my personal goals, aka real-life actions. I live in Flavortown, so maybe things are different for you, but there’s always some nice gestures to be had if we make the effort.
-have only one Mtb
-sell my car/ carshare
-higher quality parts to encourage long lasting, repairable products & possibly local mfg
-buy second hand if possible
-reduce meat/ dairy consumption


We need to put more focus on the real definition of Value. What gives something value? The money you get when you sell it? The lessons it can teach you?Personal success and monetary gain are very individual things. Collectivity over ego. We have the technology to work together. (Uhhh...is that technology there because of capitalism?..in a big part yes, but our good ol’ American dream has backfired)

The only way to win the race is to pass the baton, not finish 1st.
  • 4 0
 A good way of learning the value of things is always trying to do it yourself. Good luck making that carbon frame. Good luck saving money & time. Disgusted by another country’s policies towards human labor & the environment? Then maybe it’s time to stop encouraging them.
  • 2 0
 Well said, and thank you for focusing on the core issue and actions rather than splitting hairs and complaining. I think your list is good and mostly reasonable. Cars are tricky to part with depending on local mass transit and how you get to the trail.

Second hand for a lot of things is awesome! I just moved and needed some furniture, found a great table and bookshelf that were older (so made with quality materials not IKEA sawdust) for dirt cheap.

Humans are intrinsically selfish thanks to our evolution and survival instincts. Appealing to our "higher nature" and getting enough people to think beyond their own wants is an uphill battle. I am very pessimistic about it but hope I am wrong.
  • 10 0
 The news we need! Keep Moab natural.
  • 15 7
 This is old news, it was the 1st thing the Bonespurr did when he got into office 3years ago! Selling AMERICA for his gains and his oil buddies!
  • 7 14
flag tacklingdummy (Jan 27, 2020 at 11:50) (Below Threshold)
 Do you drive a gas car, heat your home or water with natural gas, or mountain bike? Much of mountain bike equipment is made from fossil fuels. So there's that.
  • 7 2
 @tacklingdummy: So more more oil for more bikes, but less trails? That's your argument?
  • 3 10
flag tacklingdummy (Jan 27, 2020 at 12:54) (Below Threshold)
 @Gibbsatron: My argument is that if you use a lot of fossil fuels, then you don't really have much of an argument.
  • 25 21
 Did anyone even read the article??? What impact does directional drilling (thousands of feet under the ground) from an adjacent area have on the trail? Exactly zero, zilch, nada. Thank you big oil for my carbon wonder bike, keeping gas under $5/gallon, and the US slightly less dependent on foreign oil.

"The BLM says that not all leased land gets developed and the current parcels would NOT allow any surface work to be completed, however directional drilling from adjacent parcels could still be used to extract the fossil fuels from under the trails."
  • 10 9
 I think there is more concern about
1. Drinking water.
2. "Development" of nearby land. When oil moves in, they tend to turn the area into a bit of a wasteland and having that even near such a place is the concern (I believe)
In the end there seems to be plenty of outrage against the fact that land so many enjoy can be auctioned off like this
  • 13 1
 @Lookinforit: the oil is usually located far below the water shelf (like thousands of feet) and the developed area of a gas site does not look like a wasteland. They are essentially proposing to drill underground from an existing site to reach the oil. They could literally do this and you would have no idea they are doing it. The only way you would be able to tell is the increase in tractor trailer traffic during drilling.
  • 13 3
 @Lookinforit: as for wastelands and water concerns, Moab used to be a Uranium mining town with the largest uranium deposit in the United States. They are still dealing with the mine tailings to this day, so i think the people of Moab are familiar with the repercussions of this kind of industrial development. Unfortunately, big money will probably win out over common sense.
  • 2 0
 @pencil-sr: oh that's something I didn't know! Thanks for the info and yeah I guess compared to that, this may be lower impact...
  • 3 1
 They said the same about fracking.
  • 3 0
 @ChachiArcola: They frac all over out there. Doing it thousands of feet under the trail from a lease on an adjacent parcel won't effect anything.
  • 4 2
 @laksboy: Wanna bet? Let’s reconvene in a few years and let’s see who’s correct. My money is on....me. I hope I’m wrong, but history says otherwise. But yeah! Let’s drill and f*ck up the planet and just say it’s not our problem!
  • 4 0
 "The proposed land will now undergo a period of public consultation that begins on February 20 and lasts for 30 days. They will then become available for lease in June. The operators will then have to submit a proposal and an environmental analysis will be conducted. Reports indicate that the bids will not pass the public consultation as the potential for energy production is low and the land should generate more revenue through tourism than drilling."

Reading this leads me to believe that the PUBLIC can stop this process during the CONSULTATION period. So... Go Public! BLM just needs a proposal to charge a fee based on average tourist visits that will be greater than energy yield/profit from oil. Want GREEN, spend GREEN. I'll pay to play.
  • 5 1
 Hey @jamessmurthwaite thanks for bringing this to light for the mountain bike community. You did a pretty good job explaining the issue, but there are a few things you might update. First, it’s a “public comment period” not public consultation, this step is initiated through requirements in the NEPA process, and there are multiple opportunities to comment on oil and gas leasing prior to sale. “Reports indicate that the bids will not pass the public consultation as the potential for energy production is low and the land should generate more revenue through tourism than drilling.” What reports? Past evidence of the current administration and Energy Dominance agenda has demonstrated speculative lease sales on low potential lands. So much so, Senator Cortez Masto submitted a bill last week to end this practice. Recreation access is just not being threatened in Utah, it’s happening in several Western states, like Colorado and Nevada.

www.cortezmasto.senate.gov/news/press-releases/cortez-masto-introduces-legislation-to-prohibit-oil-and-gas-speculation-on-low-potential-lands

www.outdooralliance.org/blog/2019/6/4/more-on-the-sketchy-leasing-off-of-public-lands?rq=oil

www.outdooralliance.org/blog/2019/7/15/standing-up-for-recreation-and-public-process-in-oil-amp-gas-leasing?rq=oil
  • 4 0
 Unless they were bidding on the parcel/block of land where the trail is, no one who goes to ride the trail will even know that there is a horizontal well about 2+ miles underneath your wheels. You'd be clueless unless you drive by the active drill/frac site or see the trucks that bring materials for the ongoing operations. The site could also be miles away.

In case you want to know more about the technology that allows you to live life the way you do:
corporate.exxonmobil.com/Energy-and-environment/Tools-and-processes/Hydraulic-fracturing
  • 3 2
 Yup. Fracking had no negative effects either, right?
  • 1 1
 @ChachiArcola: Correct. Surface spills, negligence, and inadequate casing/cementing jobs have negative effects. I'm surprised you knew that.
  • 1 1
 @dscottycole: Hmmm, It’s now been pulled by the BLM. Wink Good. Obviously there was enough pushback.
  • 4 0
 Does anyone in these comments even know what directional drilling/boring even means?
They could directional bore this and none of you would have any idea unless you saw the machine they used during the short period of time it took to bore it. The article even states "the current parcels would not allow any surface work to be completed" so the trail will literally won't be affected in any way.
  • 4 0
 A lot of complainers in here jumping on the it’s so cool to hate trump train. Once many of them start paying their own bills and buying their own bikes they will appreciate our economy a bit more. I don’t agree with the drilling and often don’t agree with trumps childish tweets but if you think Obama or anyone on the left side is the answer you are ignorant to what is really going on. Paying terrorists $200,000 per American household and cutting jobs didn’t help. Politics in every country sucks and there’s no one that does exactly everything for the betterment of those they are leading without looking out for self. It’s a shame that the guy that might be doing it less is a pompous businessman with childish outbursts. That’s our fault. The fact is the others are way worse. I wish he was more environmental but I also like the idea of cutting off the Mideast for oil. I’m certainly enjoying less taxes abd a major bump in your 401k. Young trump complainers, you’ll figure out what that is when you get your first real job.
  • 2 4
 Less taxes and a bump in your 401k? Bullshit. Unless you’re already super wealthy, there’s no way.
  • 3 0
 @ChachiArcola: not wealthy. Middle class with two kids. 401k is based on the markets and if you’ve been paying attention then you noticed the markets have been great ever since Trump took office. Less taxes yes and more back in my returns. Don’t let your liberalism and hate for Trump skew the facts.
  • 1 2
 @nocker: when you remove regulation a boom is sure to take place, smart money is preparing for the recession trumps setting up making the same moves as GWB. Economy was great under bush too until the tent cities and foreclosures
  • 2 0
 @Cheddar420: That's the thing, Bush gave the mortgage companies free reign on taking advantage of people with ridiculous interest only loans most could never pay back. Couple that with a war that made Haliburton one of the wealthiest companies at the expense of our troops' lives and the American tax payers..... That said, I personally don't think Trump's economy is going to cause a recession. The left wants that and what will surely fast track us into a recession is if one of the far leftys is elected. It will plummet like never before. Especially Bernie! The regulations weren't solely environmental, but that's what they want you to think. Also, you have to factor all of the money we were giving to other countries. We were getting suckered, especially by China. I wasn't a Bush fan, Not an Obama fan either. Both presidencies were some of the worst in our history for different reasons. Not a fan of Trump's nonsense tweets and childish ways but there are many things working under his presidency. But at the end of the day, as far as a recession goes, I can only tell you my opinion. Who knows what will really happen.....
  • 6 0
 Look everyone.... it could be much worse. They could be drilling under... any other trail in Moab.
  • 3 0
 From a very brief search it looks like there maybe a gas or CO2 reservoir under slick rock. Most of the oil and gas reservoirs are north and south of Moab. ugspub.nr.utah.gov/publications/circular/c-119.pdf I think that currently natural gas is in a surplus situation so a small play may not be a priority at the moment. If gas prices increase as use increases (if it does) then perhaps small fields will become economic. More important perhaps is how gas fields are more precisely located for actual drilling. There may be seismic surveys or maybe gravity surveys from the surface above the potential reservoir and that work may be more “invasive”. I was a hard rock geologist not soft rock so I am no expert on this type of resource but perhaps someone more knowledgeable than I am can inform us.
  • 8 1
 This comment thread is cancer.
  • 4 1
 As long as the drilling doesn't negatively affect the trail network or drastically change the appearance of the area, the idea of the blm to allow drilling on THEIR OWN PROPERTY makes plenty of sense! Especially because it would only help the the economy in the area, if it is done appropriately.
  • 4 0
 Hey Pinkbike!! Can you guys post when the public comment period is open? From what I've seen, a lot of the commenters here sound like they could use a focus for their energy...
  • 8 3
 We're the cancer. Either the earth will die because of us or it will eventually "cure" itself from us and go on.
  • 6 1
 science points more toward the latter.
  • 3 1
 Trying to outbid leases to prevent them from being used can get you in a lot of trouble. Terry Tempest Williams has already tried that. www.motherjones.com/environment/2016/10/oil-gas-blm-climate-change-lease

And if you can't actually pay for the bid, you get the book thrown at you and put in prison as what happened to Tim DeChristopher www.sltrib.com/news/environment/2018/12/15/years-after-he-monkey
  • 5 0
 I buy extra oil to pour out on the ground to keep the earths axis lubricated. #earthfirst
  • 3 1
 I think it is critical to mention the risk to Moab's sole source aquifer being fracked up..... politics and blame aside, if Moab's only drinking water source is damaged from offset drilling related disturbance, imagine how much plastic bottled water will be shipped here to support even just the year round local population... We ALL need clean water to drink. Boom and Bust and Boom and Bust and Boom and Bust....
  • 4 3
 What's hilarious is the people who are most ticked about this are the people who rave about national parks and monuments. That's all federal land and it has NOTHING to do with preservation. It's so when they want to lease and make billions, they can without asking anyone to leave.
  • 4 3
 @JamesSmurthwaite should be ashamed for writing this terrible article and not pointing out that NO SURFACES WILL BE DAMAGED OR AFFECTED IN ANY WAY. Seeing this type of article and all these pathetic comments from the ignorant masses makes me disappointed in the community as a whole. All you people need to educate yourselves and not just believe everything you see on TV or read from a liberal biased article. This is pure garbage.
  • 2 2
 It’s amazing how brainwashed people can be. Look at you, shilling for the oil industry. Good work sporto.
  • 1 0
 Excuse me, if I may interject just a few thoughts into this polarizing conversation about energy. Fossil fuels are 29th century technology. Solar energy is 19th century technology. Those are facts. Augustin Mouchot demonstrated solar powered steam engines in the 1870’s and even displayed a solar powered ice maker in 1878 that worked flawlessly. He believed that one day fossil fuel would run out and was unsustainable given the fact that it’s a finite resource. So he worked on energy alternatives. The technological development train went with coal because its uh really easy for us to set fire to things. So all the tech development went that way. Much of our current electric grid is still running on 100+ yo tech methods. If we had chosen to develop solar energy and other forms instead of just setting fire to fossil fuels, the solar tech would be highly developed by now. So we have an industry that’s still young and tech that has yet to be developed. Refusing to develop technology is not wise. No one is going to force you to stop driving or whatever. The world needs energy. Fossil fuels pollute. That’s all there is to it. Let’s develop some tech here. Yes it’ll have growing pains because we didn’t listen to a very wide Frenchman long ago.
  • 1 0
 I meant fossil fuels are 19th century tech. Misprint
  • 7 7
 If your really concerned about this & want real answers talk with the Sierra Club we may not agree with them on other topics but there alot more dialed on getting action on topics like this, if there a problem they'll be on top of it!
  • 5 0
 Yeah the sierra club is really mtb friendly
  • 19 19
 @jamessmurthwaite irresponsible journalism to put Trumps name in this article simply to incite hatred on our president.
The definition of FAKE NEWS. He did not make this decision, and this could and would happen under any president.
  • 1 3
 The leases come as part of Trump's Energy Dominance plan that saw him pull out of the Paris Climate agreement, open up new land for leasing and cut the red tape that prevented the construction of energy infrastructure such as pipelines. Last year, the USA held 28 onshore oil and gas lease sales that generated $1.1 billion USD.
  • 3 0
 Oh boy.... here we go. Everyone go ahead and put on your perspective hats and get it out of your system.
  • 4 0
 this should be a reasonable and level-headed discussion.
  • 2 2
 To those that are claiming since it's directional drilling the trail won't be affected. You are ignoring the negative effects that will happen:
eye and earsore of the nearby pumps,
the added dirt and pollution haze that will obstruct the view,
the additional truck traffic,
new access roads that will increase erosion...
not to mention these types of sketchy drilling have been linked to friggin' earthquakes www.scientificamerican.com/article/drilling-for-earthquakes
  • 3 2
 It's horizontal drilling far from the trail, if you read the article and the BLM releases. Just FYI. Don't care if it doesn't happen.
  • 6 7
 All you hypocrites drive cars, sit in chairs, drink out of plastic cups, sit on plastic toilet seats, type on your plastic phones...etc. NONE of you would have anything wihtout OIL...NOT EVEN a bicycle. Wake up and do your homework before chimign in with your naive comments that absolutely stupid.
  • 2 1
 I think I can safely bet that 90% of the people you refer to are already doing their homework. Maybe you should do it too?
  • 3 0
 Sad about the story....even sadder about the comments.
  • 2 3
 Makes me sad too. I thought that a majority of mountain bikers cared for the environment. But I shouldn’t let the Pinkbike kids bring me down, as most of these commentators can’t even vote yet!
  • 1 1
 If you really want info or knowledge on what YOU can do this is the Sierra Club’s contact info for the Utah chapter


800 S 423 W
Ste A 105
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
801-467-9294
utah.chapter@sierraclub.org
  • 2 0
 All good things seem to come to an end Frown
  • 2 0
 Good, kind of. Maybe more people will care/speak up now.
  • 5 3
 We need the oil to generate electricity for our E-Bikes.
  • 2 2
 Need nat gas, as do all 'green' cars lol
  • 3 0
 In the PNW an e-bike charged off a grid that’s 89% hydroelectric.
  • 5 1
 We need oil to generate every part of our bikes.
  • 1 0
 @2hellUride43: not the engine
  • 1 0
 @bishopsmike: most oeople do...gta get out food from source...
  • 2 0
 DRAINAGGGGEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!
  • 1 0
 This is the only useful comment in this sea of partisan tv-recycles crap from everyone. Haha
  • 3 4
 I'm alright with the "not in my backyard" argument. Not that I live there but does that trail really need to messed up? I mean, it's an awesome trail and it's gotta be some kind of world heritage site by now...
  • 12 0
 Nothing is going to happen to the trail. The oil is below the trail. Wells can be drilled directionally these days from miles away. Oil companies don't want to spend the money to develop new leases so they will likely drill from an old lease that has already been developed. Not hard to tell how many people commenting just read the title and got on the outrage train.
  • 5 0
 @calebscott: Yeah it seems like this is really not news? The only reason people are reacting is because they didn't read the part about the directional drilling...
  • 2 4
 Love the Moab area, would hate to see these amazing trail go to oil drilling. I am very glad that other people are opposed to this, as I am obsessed with this kind of stuff and how we can fix it. I am aware that mountain biking doesn't necessarily help the problem of pollution, but I think riders are much more aware of the problem (i feel like I am), and we are more willing to help than other people.
I was reading this, kinda not surprised that: "Reports indicate that the bids will not pass the public consultation as the potential for energy production is low and the land should generate more revenue through tourism than drilling." That statement says it all. There are so many people that love this area, and it is not worth any amount of money... The views, vibes, and ultra-unique riding make it a one-of-a kind place.
  • 3 1
 "the current parcels would not allow any surface work to be completed, however directional drilling from adjacent parcels could still be used to extract the fossil fuels from under the trails."

This implies that recreation would not be affected. It seems silly of these reports to cite the fact that tourism generates more revenue when in fact both tourism and drilling can go on concurrently, presumably with ZERO effect on the tourism/recreation.

I feel as though the real issue here is drinking water contamination, and while I do not know what exactly is going on here, I assume that this is unlikely.
  • 3 1
 @CobyCobie: This is exactly what they said about fracking. That it won’t do any damage and leaves no trace. Bullshit. But good for you for siding with the oil executives! Shill.
  • 3 0
 @ChachiArcola: I guess my issue is that people here are reacting to the likely fictional effects on recreation, when this is really no different from drilling anywhere else.
  • 4 3
 No matter what type or how much drilling they do, it will be much less harmful than E-bikes on the trails.............
  • 1 0
 This is all assuming that there is economically recoverable oil in this area. I wouldn't count on that.
  • 2 0
 This trail broke my rim. Serves it right.
  • 2 0
 WOW PB ...nothing like getting the Rantpage going !!!Smile
  • 7 6
 This is horrible! We do not need to have the oil drilled!
  • 2 2
 watch the documentary called “the third industrial revolution” pretty crazy, guys
  • 1 1
 its hardly a documentary. more of a presentation.
  • 1 0
 Because we need more oil.
  • 1 0
 So slick rock will be renamed to cracked rock
  • 2 0
 Damn 29ers
  • 1 1
 Well... I'm glad I got to ride it before it gets F'ed up!!!!!!!!!!
  • 1 1
 Beer and ice cream uses fossil fuels to make.
  • 6 6
 And greed strikes again.
  • 6 3
 Capitalism baby
  • 1 1
 Slickrock is overrated
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