Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Town Bans Fracking to Protect Air and Water: State Fights Back


With Ban on Drilling Practice, Town Lands in Thick of Dispute http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/26/us/with-ban-on-fracking-colorado-town-lands-in-thick-of-dispute.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20121126

[Excerpted] Gov. John W. Hickenlooper, a Democrat, has warned Longmont residents that the ban is likely to mean a lawsuit from the state, which insists that only it has the authority to regulate drilling. Already this summer, Colorado sued Longmont over earlier city rules that limit drilling near schools and homes. 
Local leaders are also bracing for more lawsuits as they tell energy companies they can no longer frack their wells — a process that involves injecting thousands of gallons of pressurized water, sand and chemicals deep into the earth to fissure the rock and extract the oil and gas locked inside.

The ban does not outlaw all drilling, only the specific practice of hydraulic fracturing within the city limits, as well as the storage and disposal of waste created by the process. 

...In nearby Firestone, wells sit within a few hundred feet of libraries, schools and subdivisions. In Greeley, herds of tanker trucks line up at city fire hydrants at dawn to load water for fracking. Earlier this year, a federal scientist reported finding elevated levels of propane and benzene in the air around Erie. City officials and environmental advocates have even led fracking tours of communities where drilling is at its peak.

When people learned of plans to sink wells in Longmont near the Union Reservoir and a playground and recreational area on the east end of town, a response began to coalesce: not here. Supporters said the state’s decision to sue over Longmont’s regulations stiffened their resolve....

Majia here: Townspeople should have the right to deny wells in the middle of town, in parks, and in residential areas.

Communities will be left with air and water contamination while the frackers make off with profits.

This is gross injustice and I hope the people of Longmont stand fast in their resolve to block the destruction of their community.

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