This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Will anyone in the Utah Legislature care enough about this state's environment to resist the Orwellian cynicism of oil industry lobbyist Jeff Hartley's call for an "environmental protection defense fund"? ("Utah lawmakers look to amass anti-environmental war chest," Tribune, Nov. 20.)
Or will they all just roll over and put their paws in the air so the oil and gas industries can scratch their tummies? Without doubt this "environmental protection defense fund" that Sen. David Hinkins and his kind are reportedly putting together at Hartley's urging is the most hypocritical and twisted piece of rhetoric I have witnessed in this state's anti-environmental crusade.
The only thing the "fund" is designed to defend is the right of the oil and gas industries to do whatever they want. Its purpose is to defeat any effort by the federal government to improve the state's air quality or to protect endangered species that get in the industries' way.
We the people of Utah need no further proof that this state's officials should never be given control of Utah's federal lands.