By Christopher Schurtz, Las Cruces Sun-News, N.M. Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Jan. 8--New Mexico environmentalists are slamming the Bureau of Land Management's proposed plan to allow drilling on the Otero Mesa, calling it "confusing by design" and based "on a blatant lie."
But state oil and gas industry representatives, who criticized the plan as being too restrictive, rejected many environmentalist concerns and said drilling will have a minimal impact.
The BLM's proposed resource management plan was released Monday after almost five years of work, which the BLM said included input from gas and oil producers, environmentalists and sportsmen who oppose drilling in most of Otero Mesa.
"The BLM likes to say they worked with environmentalists, but they never worked with us for a moment, and in fact they've worked against us from day one," said Steve Capra, associate director of the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance.
Capra said the plan "is …