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Bobby McEnaney, Senior Lands Analyst, Deputy Director Western Renewables Energy Program, DC

Bobby McEnaney
I like to think that I won the birth lottery having been born in Montana. Because of my luck, I had great opportunities to become part of a place that was defined by its wildness -- first Montana, then later in Idaho. This connection to place was strongly reinforced by family, in being a fifth generation descended from some of the first pioneers in Montana. Even as kids, we were aware of a quality unique to the West, awed by the natural beauty around us. A conservation ethic came early and became a normal part of our lives; this was especially true given that I was driven by a love for fishing. Having evolved -- some would say devolved -- into an unrepentant fly fisherman, there were too many times where I saw some of my most prized fishing holes be literally turned into parking lots (and worse). Unbridled development is of course not unique to the West, but some of the actions I saw seemed just so shortsighted. This is what drives my efforts as part of NRDC’s Land & Wildlife Program, as we work to protect the West from harebrained schemes while trying to advance truly sustainable development.

Recent Posts

Recovering Sage Grouse Will Need Everyone at the Table

Posted August 19, 2014 by Bobby McEnaney in Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Western landscapes have much to offer with their natural splendor and vast spaces, but one other defining characteristic of the natural West is the teeming and charismatic wildlife to be found.  One of these charismatic species, the Greater Sage Grouse...continued

Protecting the Law That Protects Our National Treasures

Posted March 26, 2014 by Bobby McEnaney in Environmental Justice, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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The Grand Canyon. Protection of this icon is directly due to the Antiquities Act (photo: NPS) Since 1906, sixteen U.S. presidents have used the landmark Antiquities Act to permanently protect  such beloved national treasures as the Grand Canyon, the Statue of Liberty,...continued

Federal Investigation Reveals Massive Taxpayer Giveaway to Oil and Gas Drillers

Posted December 17, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Interior Department Abandons Reforms that Would Have Addressed this Giveaway Oil and gas wells in Colorado. The impacts from drilling are undeniable, the least that should be done is to require drillers to pay their fair share.   Today the...continued

House Republicans' Reckless Energy Bills Would Tear up Federal Lands and Shut Down Public Engagement

Posted November 19, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Now that House Republicans have moved beyond closing national parks, stalling environmental safeguards and canceling research in places like Antarctica with the government shutdown, they’re scheduled to pass three wildly misguided energy bills. These bills, H.R. 1900, H.R. 1965 and...continued

The Interior Department's Remarkable Decision to Not Allow the Drilling of Utah Wilderness

Posted November 15, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), in an example of how the land management system should work, made an announcement today to cancel a proposal that would have permitted drilling for oil and gas on thousands of acres within...continued

Three Needed Steps in Meeting the President's Climate Goal to Double Renewables on the Nation's Public Lands

Posted June 27, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming

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This administration should be applauded for its commitment in ensuring that our nation is a global clean energy leader – High on the list of to do items in the President’s new plan to fight climate change includes a goal...continued

A Rebalancing Act - No Better Time for the President to Protect Public Lands

Posted February 5, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Whether right or wrong, it is hard to shake the perception that Congress exists as a repository for where good ideas go to die.  And at least in the context of protecting wilderness, it would be doubly hard to disprove...continued

NRDC Challenges Interior Decision to Drill in Utah Wilderness

Posted January 24, 2013 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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As we have written about in prior posts, NRDC has been focused on opposing a drilling plan approved by the Interior Department that would allow oil and gas drilling within the famed Desolation Canyon wilderness area of Utah.  The plan...continued

Interior Department Rolls Out New Solar Program

Posted October 12, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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New Solar Program is Historical by Embracing a Landscape Approach to Energy Development Turtle Mountain Wilderness, which is adjacent to the now eliminated, but proposed Iron Mountain solar energy zone. Thanks to a deliberative study process embraced by the Interior...continued

The RAPID ACT: The House Proposes to Eliminate Environmental Safeguards As We Know It

Posted July 18, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Above: The aftermath of a 55,000 pound oil and gas exploration vehicle, or "Thumper Truck," that left deep ruts in the fragile Utah desert – damage that will take centuries to repair.  In 2002, NRDC and its partners successfully...continued

Exxon's "Megaloads" Scheme is Dead

Posted June 20, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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The original test module parked adjacent to the Clearwater River in Idaho. This shipment, which has been parked at Lolo Hot Springs in Montana since May 2011, will be demolished and cut into a series of smaller pieces. Photo credit: Dave King...continued

Congress Proposes to Exponentially Increase Funding for Dirty Fuels

Posted June 1, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Breaking: The House of Representatives is expected to vote today to greatly expand taxpayer funds dedicated to support research to develop dirty fuels including oil shale and liquid coal.  In a time when federal budgets are being drastically cut across the...continued

A Photo Tour of a Utah Wilderness Threatened By Drilling

Posted April 13, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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As reported a few weeks ago in a previous post, NRDC has been fighting a proposal by the Interior Department that would greatly expand oil and gas drilling within Utah’s Desolation Canyon wilderness area. Known as the "Gasco" plan...continued

Obama Administration Endorses Plans to Drill in the Utah Wilderness

Posted March 16, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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  The Obama administration decided today to back a proposal to allow nearly 1,300 new oil and gas drilling wells in Utah’s Desolation Canyon region, impacting over 200,000 acres of wildlands. The sheer scope of the project, if approved, will...continued

President's Budget: Two Oil & Gas Reforms That Could Make a Difference

Posted February 13, 2012 by Bobby McEnaney in Moving Beyond Oil, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Making Industry Pay Fees More Than You Might For an Overdue Library Book:  President Obama released the federal budget for Fiscal Year 2013, and in this package are included a number of common sense reforms that would improve how oil...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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