Environment

Oil and gas regulators signal support for 2,000-foot setbacks

BY: - September 10, 2020

A majority of the commission overseeing oil and gas drilling in Colorado on Wednesday voiced support for a significant increase in the state’s mandatory “setback” distances between new wells and occupied buildings. “I think we’re tasked with making a setback, and a regulatory regime, that is protective,” Jeff Robbins, chair of the Colorado Oil and […]

State regulators near decision on oil and gas setback distances

BY: - September 8, 2020

Within weeks of suffering defeat at the ballot box in 2018, anti-fracking group Colorado Rising announced its plans to fight on, hiring former Democratic State Rep. Joe Salazar to lead its continued efforts to hold what it called “bad government actors and abusive oil and gas companies” accountable. Now, nearly two years after voters soundly […]

Oil companies rely on controversial firm to rebut Colorado health study

BY: - September 4, 2020

One day after Colorado health officials briefed a state rulemaking panel on the potential health risks posed by oil and gas drilling, industry groups brought in an expert of their own to downplay the state’s findings — and her comments were blunt. “My expert conclusion is that there’s no credible, causal evidence that current setback […]

Trump administration rule would ‘streamline’ oil and gas drilling in Colorado’s national forests

BY: - September 2, 2020

When officials at the Bureau of Land Management sold the rights to drill for oil and gas on nearly 5,000 acres of land in Colorado’s White River National Forest in September 2018, it was the culmination of years of careful planning. Though environmentalists protested the lease sales, the six parcels in question had been offered […]

COMMENTARY

Colorado should live up to its responsibility as The Headwaters State

BY: - September 1, 2020

By Ean Thomas Tafoya and Hannah Collazo The pandemic has revealed much about the inequities that plague our nation, the resiliency of our communities, and that health is tied to zip code. Now is the time for our lawmakers to enact policies that protect the health and wellbeing of their constituents on the frontlines who […]

COMMENTARY

Oil and gas interests are trying to subvert a landmark law

BY: - August 28, 2020

Colorado lawmakers in 2019 enacted several pieces of landmark environmental legislation, including a bill meant to provide new protections against the harmful effects of oil and gas extraction. But some industry interests, along with accomplices in several local governments, are attempting to distort the intent of the bill by lobbying regulators for less local restrictions […]

‘Local control’ becomes battle in Colorado oil and gas rules overhaul

BY: - August 27, 2020

Betsy Leonard and her husband have lived in Battlement Mesa, a planned community northeast of Grand Junction, for 15 years. But not long after moving into their retirement home, nestled in the scenic desert bluffs of the Colorado River valley, the Leonards found themselves at odds with an unwelcome new neighbor. In 2009, Denver-based Antero […]

Bennet, Senate Democrats call for Pendley’s removal at BLM after withdrawn nomination

BY: - August 25, 2020

Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet and all 47 of his Democratic colleagues in the U.S. Senate are urging the removal of William Perry Pendley from his leadership post at the Bureau of Land Management, following the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw the conservative firebrand’s formal nomination to lead the public-lands agency. A former head of the […]

Oil and gas commission launches major overhaul of state drilling regulations

BY: - August 24, 2020

Reaching for a way to describe the challenge facing the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission at an Aug. 24 hearing, agency director Julie Murphy picked a Colorado-appropriate metaphor. “The only way that I could think about summarizing what the last decade, or year, or month has been for so many of us … is […]

Colorado lawmakers join calls to Polis administration for faster climate regulation

BY: - August 24, 2020

Two sponsors of the landmark climate-change legislation passed by Colorado Democrats in 2019 have joined a growing chorus of criticism against Gov. Jared Polis’s administration over what environmental advocates say are unacceptable delays in implementing the new law. In a statement issued Aug. 21, state Sen. Faith Winter and state Rep. Dominique Jackson charged the […]

Oil and gas groups block briefing for officials on health impacts of drilling

BY: - August 19, 2020

Colorado’s five new oil and gas commissioners were set to hear a presentation from state officials on the health impacts of drilling this week — but oil and gas interest groups objected, and the commission agreed to cancel the briefing. Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission chair Jeff Robbins noted the decision at the beginning […]

COMMENTARY

Colorado wildfires should rekindle action on climate crisis

BY: - August 19, 2020

Amidst the chaos of a novel coronavirus and historic presidential elections, Coloradans have been starkly reminded of another threat looming large — climate change. As of Tuesday, over 134,000 acres are burning in Colorado. The Pine Gulch Fire is already the fourth largest fire in the state’s history (and growing), and most of the fires […]