« Return to this article

for people who care about the West

After dollars are spent, destruction remains

  Regarding Paul Larmer’s editorial "Storing fat from the feeding frenzy" (HCN, 11/28/05: Storing fat from the feeding frenzy): Wyoming may be doing a better job of managing oil and gas revenues; however, that revenue hardly compensates for the destruction of frenzied and uncontrolled development. Qwest, EnCana and coalbed methane drillers have the Bureau of Logging and Mining assisting them and state regulators on the run. Severance and royalty payments remind me of the minuscule payments made to Native Americans for their lands.

Like them, what do we do after selling our birthright for a bowl of porridge? Ten-acre spacing of infill drilling leaves no surface values behind. So we may be better at managing this pittance; we are more dependent on it and will be left with destruction long after the dollars disappear.

Bob Laybourn
Cheyenne, Wyoming