Open Letter to BLM (Deb Coffey)

On a recent visit to a trap site from the Antelope Complex Roundup One Horse was seen in an area that three bands were documented last year. (Leigh)

by Debbie Coffey Copyright 2011 All Rights Reserved.

This is about the wild horse roundups. BUT, ranch owners who own cattle and sheep should pay attention to the following, and wonder what water or land will be left for your livestock grazing in the future.  Why do you think the DOI is removing all of the wild horses off our public lands?  For you?

Jay D’Ewart
BLM Rocks Springs Field Office
280 Highway 191 North
Rock Springs, WY 82901

Subject: White Mountain/Little Colorado Environmental Assessment Comments

Dear Mr. D’Ewart:

In this BLM Environmental Assessment,   
Section 1.2 PURPOSE AND NEED, the EA states:
“The need for this action is to remove excess animals in order to achieve a thriving natural ecological balance between wild horse populations, wildlife, livestock, vegetation, and water resources and to protect the range from deterioration associated with overpopulation of wild horses as authorized under Section 1333 (b) (2) of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses & Burros Act (1971).”

My comments are:

1) One of my biggest concerns is that this Environmental Assessment is based on flawed reasoning and for reasons listed below is, basically (in my opinion), fraud against the American public, no matter what “authorizations” it hides behind. 

Mr. D’Ewart, this is not directed at you personally, I know you are just filling in the blanks on a boilerplate BLM template and doing your job.  But for the BLM to do an 80 page EA on the “deterioration to the range” that so few wild horses supposedly do, while at the same time doing a 6 page Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) on the oil and gas lease sales on 105,231 acres of public lands in your district, it seems to have absolutely nothing to do with “a natural ecological balance” and the only thing that will be “thriving” are the pockets of politicians who are selling out the American people.

2) Regarding “ecological balance,” it defies logic that:
Only 69 wild horses will be allowed on THEIR Little Colorado Herd Management Area (HMA) which consists of 611,113 acres of public land. (That’s only one horse every 8,711 acres).
And only 205-300 horses will be allowed on THEIR White Mountain HMA which is 236,921 acres of public land. (That’s only one horse every 1,155 acres).

This is the equivalent of only 10 horses causing the same amount of “degradation” as ALL of the oil and gas projects and all of their digging, pipelines, construction, trucks and water usage on 105,231 acres in your district (not to mention the additional fracking from oil shale projects and the effects of the tar sands project mentioned below).

3) Regarding desire to “protect the range from deterioration” by relatively few wild horses, what about the EA for the oil and gas leases?  It states the following deterioration:  “Contamination of soil from drilling and production wastes mixed into soil or spilled on the soil surfaces could cause a long-term reduction in site productivity” and “Direct impacts resulting from the oil and gas construction of well pads, access roads, and reserve pits include removal of vegetation, exposure of the soil, mixing of horizons, compaction, loss of top soil productivity and susceptibility to wind and water erosion. Wind erosion could be a moderate contributor to soil erosion given the average wind speeds in the area. Dust from vehicle traffic would also be a factor. Indirect impacts such as runoff, erosion and off-site sedimentation could result from construction and operation of well sites, access roads, gas pipelines and facilities.”

YET, BLM gave them a FONSI that claimed this damage “will not significantly affect the quality of the human environment, individually or cumulatively”

4) In connection with the water:  Consider that a horse only drinks about 15 gallons of water a day.   Then consider what the oil and gas leasing in your district (which was found to have no significant impact) could do:
“Spills or produced fluids (e.g., saltwater, oil, fracking chemicals, and/or condensate in the event of a breech, overflow, or spill from storage tanks) could result in contamination of the soil onsite, or offsite, and may potentially impact surface and groundwater resources in the long term.”

“Petroleum products and other chemicals could result in groundwater contamination through a variety of operational sources including but not limited to pipelines, well (gas and water) construction, and spills. Similarly, improper construction and management of reserve and evaporation pits could degrade ground water quality through leakage and leaching.”

“Water wells developed for oil and gas drilling could result in a draw down in the quantity of water in the residential wells”

So, the BLM finds this to be of no significant impact? 
5)  Also, regarding “a thriving natural ecological balance” and protecting “the range from deterioration,” let’s just take a little peek at two other things: the proposed oil shale and tar sands projects you’re planning in your district (Wyoming, Utah and Colorado).
Regarding the oil shale, I just have one word to say:  FRACKING.

And about the proposed tar sands project, the Indigenous Environmental Network (in Canada, where they have tar sands mining) states: “Water is needed in huge amounts in tar sands production and in all other construction stages of tar sands infrastructure across the continent. It takes five liters of water to produce one of usable petrol…Waste tailings ponds are so vast as to be visible from outer space at this early point in production.”

This, while the BLM removes our wild horses from our sight. And “leases” (sells) our public lands for devastation.


FONSI for oil and gas leases:

The EA this FONSI was based on:


16 thoughts on “Open Letter to BLM (Deb Coffey)

  1. gwen confalone says:

    WOW!!!!!! Well written and RIGHT ON!!!!

  2. Darcy says:

    Deb you are totally F*$#ing awesome LOL

  3. MargoWolf says:

    Deb, Thank you so much for using these damaging and polluting mining practices as superb examples of what has Huge and Long Lasting impact on the earth but is AOK for BLM to allow to be carried out on our public lands. This is thoroughly hypocritical for BLM to be removing horses from their ranges who have had a more positive impact than negative over the decades. Surely this has become so blatant that BLM will be further exposed.

    Without the National Press reporting on these things in their proper importance to us and our doubtful future ability to use our public lands this information is not common knowledge and needs to be spread online in order to reach as many as possible.

    This sort of activity is what the BLM and government want to become Business As Usual. Wild Horses and all affected then become their victims. The fight we are in is becoming a real war.

  4. velda says:

    I think every last inhumane person will be punished someday for killing these beautiful horses. ( Gods Creatures) that he put here for our purpose, and these so called humans destroying them. all i can say to them is when you stand before God one day and he asks you what good deed have you done, and you reply…ive killed thousands of your beautiful creatures! Well, Im glad im not YOU.

  5. MargoWolf says:

    The illegality of the removals from the manipulation of the AMLs is becoming more and more obvious. The law needs to be upheld where stated. The steamroller just keeps coming at us. How can we stop it??? Dismantle it. Take it down piece by piece. When all is said and done we are fighting for the Place the wild herds belong to. The stage is huge. We legally must preserve “place” to save herds. Water is the underlying resource victim the mining practices create. Water is life. This is irreversible damage. BLM and the mining corporations all lie about the effects of Fracking which is the pouring of tons of poison into the earth with no removal plan because it cannot be taken back. Kill water and kill life. Save the herds!

  6. is this the email addreess for the letter to go to?
    should it be sent via email, or U.S. Mail, or does it matter?

  7. I am from a third world country (as they believe we are) ,
    yes i am from a third world country but American Government is a disgrace in the eyes of our public , Torturers , Murderers and Killers ….
    A disgrace to the human society and humanity if there is anything left of Humanity …..

  8. Diane Symons says:

    Need I say more this is wonderful. Awesome we are going to help them.

  9. Louie Cocroft says:

    You can also send with RETURN RECEIPT and that gives proof of delivery. We, then have a track record of the fact that we have responded to the EAs. In the case of a Congressional Investigation, this would be important:

    Certified Mail Return Receipt
    Each USPS Certified Mail letter provides proof of mailing and delivery of a letter. The sender receives a receipt at the time of mailing from the Postal Service. Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested is a product of the US Postal Service that provides information about when a letter is mailed and delivered. A Certified Mail Return Receipt letter is a First Class letter that provides evidence or proof of mailing as well as evidence or proof the Certified Mail letter was delivered. Each letter contains a unique Certified Mail article number that is 21 digits long and the number is express as a bar code on the outside of the letter beginning with a ’70 or ’71′ article number. These article numbers match back to an electronic file used to print the Electronic Return Receipt PDF file. This provides the sender a fast and easy way to store ‘Certified Mail’ Electronic Reports that provide proof of mailing and USPS letter delivery confirmation. Using a Certified Mail Envelope with Electronic Return Receipt™ provides the ‘in-route’ letter tracking and the final letter delivery scan for each letter.

    Today Proof of Service is written in many state laws that favor USPS Certified Mail or USPS Certified Mail Return Receipt service this provides the sender the date of mailing or receipt, because it is noted on the Return Receipt


  10. When Governments take lives and spill blood , that is not Murder , that is not cruelty and that is not Violence , why ? because it’s a Government , they kill by the law so we should love them , we should Vote for them,
    We should love the BLM because they KILL by the LAW , which Law ? only God knows ,
    They tell me why i HATE the BLM ,
    isn’t that obvious ?
    How could i reach for a hand of murderer ?
    How could i be respectful to a murderer ?
    If i do that , what is the difference between me , you and the BLM ?
    Could YOU ?
    What is difference between the BLOOD of a horse and my BLOOD ?

  11. […] it is with MUCH APPRECIATION to DEB COFFEY and LAURA LEIGH,  a WONDERFUL LETTER has been provided to send to BLM.   This is a very easy job.  You may either […]

  12. Gertie Lux says:

    Wouldn’t you all agree that who so ever “owns” the feral horses should pay for their board,room, medical care?
    Whose pets are these anyway?
    Anyone here?

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