This is some of what The Obama administration could be doing to BP. Though American Indian tribes have certainly been subjected to these outrages far longer than citizens in the Gulf, the lying and instiable greed of energy companies remains, as do the negative affects on our environment and local communities.
Energy companies in the Wild West (BP included) still walk as if they'll always have the quickest draw, but The Ute tribe of Utah is showing Questar Energy they can and will fight back against Questar's lying, cheating ways:
Officials with the Ute Indian Tribe shut down construction of the Questar Stagecoach gas plant south of Vernal, Utah on June 23.
The stop-work order was issued because work at the facility was out of compliance with tribal regulations, according to tribal officials.
"The Questar Gas Stagecoach gas plant facility was shut down because the operators were not living up to their agreement with the tribe," Ute Business Committee Chairman Curtis Cesspooch told the Vernal Express.
That's the way you do it. But don't believe this energy company picked up their marble and went home:
Judge Dale Kimball granted an injunction against tribal action July 1 but ruled Friday that the federal courts had no jurisdiction over a contract dispute. The dispute could be headed for arbitration, but a lawyer for Cesspooch said Tuesday that Questar-related companies could instead face eviction by a tribal court in 10 days.
At issue is an effort by a Questar spin-off company, QEP Resources Inc., to expand one of its five gas-producing plants on the reservation over the objections of the tribe and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Cesspooch issued a strongly worded statement after the tribe's victory Friday. He was angered by Questar's argument in court that part of the reservation where it operates ceased to exist as Indian Country a century ago. The EPA's position in court papers is that all of the company's gas-processing plants are on a reservation.
A local energy company will challenge the tribe's sovereignty, will challenge any and all court decisions, and will carry on as if they are the ones that own the ground and the energy put there by The Creator.
Our Interior Department has certainly given energy companies the impression over the years that they can do as they please. Even Ken Salazar hasn't been able to stop their rapacious behavior.
But The Ute Tribe is showing one energy company what for in Utah. It is something that could be learned by the Obama Administration and applied for the benefit of all Americans.