Governor John Hickenlooper announced the 19 members of a task force whose goal is to address some of the recent controversy around energy development in the state.
The task force will examine land use issues and what role local governments have in regulating oil and gas activities within their boundaries. The creation of a task force is part of an agreement struck by the governor in order to avoid a citizen vote on oil and gas related ballot initiatives during the November 2014 election. The governor and many others were concerned that passage of the ballot initiatives could have extremely negative consequences for the state.
One of the more striking images during the September flood was of inundated oil and gas pads, washed out earthen berms and overturned storage tanks. In all, over 48,000 gallons of oil and condensate spilled.
While changes have been made in the industry to prepare for another flood, so far, they’re strictly voluntary.
A Boulder district court judge struck down a 2013 voter-approved fracking ban in Lafayette. The move follows similar court rulings against Longmont and Fort Collins, where voters passed bans or moratoriums restricting hydraulic fracturing.
The lawsuit was initiated by the Colorado Oil and Gas Association, which argued that a ban on fracking was effectively a ban on oil and gas development.