Reports The New York Times:
In the nine years that Mr. Stringer has been the top bureau official in Vernal, the field office has approved an average of 555 new oil and gas wells a year, nearly three times the number in the previous decade. Agency records show that his office, where employees often shuttle between business and government, rarely issues drilling-related fines for environmental or safety violations and has pushed to ease rules about well sites near sensitive wildlife habitats.
The agency in Utah also sided with business executives to kill a proposed agency study of the effect of thousands of oil and gas wells on area air quality. Mr. Stringer then helped push for an industry-controlled study instead, documents show, despite protests from Environmental Protection Agency officials.