Cultural preservation among options in oil and gas plan

New Mexico

FILE – In this Aug. 10, 2005 file photo, tourist Chris Farthing from Suffolks County, England, takes a picture of Anasazi ruins in Chaco Culture National Historical Park in New Mexico. The preservation and protection of Native American cultural sites would be a priority of U.S. land managers under one of the options up for consideration as they work to amend an outdated guide for management of oil and gas drilling across a sprawling area of northwestern New Mexico. (AP Photo/Jeff Geissler, File)

ALBUQUERQUE, N .M. (AP) — The preservation and protection of Native American cultural sites would be a priority of U.S. land managers under one of the options up for consideration as they work to revamp an outdated guide for management of oil and gas drilling across northwestern New Mexico.

The area is home to Chaco Culture National Historical Park, which has become the focal point of tribes, environmentalists and archaeologists who want to halt development beyond the boundaries of the World Heritage site.

The public will have 90 days to comment on the alternatives. It could take months before a final decision is made.

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