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Business Leaders Cautious on Secretary of Interior Nominee Zinke:

For Immediate Release: 
December 21, 2016

Opposes privatization and supports renewables, but may be for sweetheart deals on drilling and mining

Contact Info
Bob Keener

WASHINGTON, DC – The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), which with its member organizations represents more than 250,000 businesses, reacted cautiously to the nomination of Representative Ryan Zinke for Secretary of the Interior.

The following statement may be attributed to David Levine, CEO of ASBC:

“We are encouraged that Rep. Zinke is on record opposing privatizing public lands and that he sees a role for developing renewable energy resources on public lands. The question is, will he also push for unbridled drilling for fossil fuels and less-than-fair-market price deals for mineral rights that will rob the U.S. Treasury of funds and hurt tourism and other industries that depend on responsible stewardship of public lands?”

Steve Klass, Executive Director of P3 Utah, a business organization in Salt Lake City, UT, added:

“We are pleased to learn of the selection of our western neighbor, Representative Ryan Zinke of Montana, to head the Department of the Interior. We are confident that, as Secretary, Mr. Zinke will continue to champion a balanced and bipartisan view in pursuing the objectives of multiple use on public lands. We believe he shares the realizations of many conservative business people of the West: that when it comes to water and air quality, the health of humans and the environment are linked and that major impacts on the land created for us are irreversible.

“We also hope he shares our view, that when it comes to the decisions that the Department makes regarding natural resources, the opportunities and support for future generations cannot be sacrificed for the short-term economic needs of current residents. Wise stewardship requires this sacred obligation to our descendants; to preserve the ecology that supports all life.”

ASBC works on a range of policy issues addressing the link between natural resource stewardship, smart growth and environmental quality. Its business members engage directly in the policy process at the federal and state level. ASBC has issued a report addressing the economic and environmental costs of hydraulic fracking. Its campaign, “Clean Water is Good for Business,” highlights the economic benefits that many companies derive from reliable, safe sources of water. In addition, ASBC advocates for a setting a price on carbon as a way to address climate change.

The American Sustainable Business Council advocates for policy change and informs business owners and the public about the need and opportunities for building a vibrant, sustainable economy. Through its national member network it represents more than 250,000 business owners, executives and investors from a wide range of industries.