By Denise Tessier
The Journal’s done it again.
If you’re not familiar with Noon, you won’t get much help from the Journal in learning more about her. All that accompanied this column was the identifier under her byline, which said: “Executive Director, CARE.”
Which might make you think it was written by someone from the international humanitarian group, CARE.
No, it’s not that one.
Since wind and solar are the darlings of the energy world, Marita has moved CARE toward specifically advocating for oil, gas, nuclear and coal and has pushed CARE onto a national platform.
Why is this important? Because Noon’s column in today’s Journal advocates elimination of the Oil Conservation Division – the state group created by the State Legislature to manage and regulate oil and gas development in New Mexico.
Her point is that the state could start tackling the yeoman’s task of cutting the state budget by eliminating redundancy. It’s hard for anyone to argue with that, but she’s saying the OCD is redundant because a few counties have tried to impose even more rigorous rules on the oil and gas industry.
The way Noon puts it, these counties are “usurping the authority given to the division” and therefore there’s no reason to have an OCD. Yet, truth be told, counties are hiring consultants and creating their own regulations because they don’t think the OCD is doing enough to protect their interests, not because they would rather being doing the job themselves.
But Noon cheerfully suggests that by taking over the OCD’s duties, counties will have to hire more people, which she says is a “win-win” because that will create county jobs. “Certainly ‘job creation’ has become a buzzword,” she helpfully adds.
The Journal has done its readers a grave disservice by failing to run an explanatory bio on Noon at the end of this column.
The editors probably didn’t have the space, but interestingly, all they would have had to do to make enough room would have been to edit out some of the redundancy in her column.
But frankly, considering her track record as a columnist and the flawed logic of this anti-regulatory piece, it shouldn’t have been run at all.