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In this KUNM series, reporter Laura Paskus explores natural gas drilling and the burgeoning oil industry in northwestern New Mexico--its benefits, impacts, and future. Funding provided by the New Venture Fund.

Voices From Drilling Deep: Mark Martinez

Credit ecoFlight
KUNM reporter Laura Paskus and Pueblo of Zuni Councilman Mark Martinez.


In October, Pueblo of Zuni Councilman Mark Martinez and I viewed Chaco Canyon National Historical Park from above during an ecoFlight tour.

Martinez was interested in flying above the park to see the remains of ancient buildings and roads. And also to see nearby drill rigs, old and new.

The Pueblo of Zuni is just one of the tribes that asked the federal government to protect Chaco Canyon.

Last spring, the All Pueblo Council of Governors passed a resolution supporting protection of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, which thousands of people enjoy visiting. But for the state’s Native Americans, the site is about more than seeing how people lived in the past. 

After we landed, Martinez spoke about the importance of that landscape to the people of Zuni Pueblo--and he explained that when people visit National Parks like Chaco, they should know that Native American people have not disappeared from the landscape.    

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