New COGA chief comes with enviro permitting background in drilling

Regime change is in the wind for the Colorado oil and gas trade association, which apparently has been conflicted for a while now. The association is challenging environmentally stricter drilling regulations while simultaneously touting those regs as adequate to oversee the industry in the face of looming federal legislation.

Tisha Conoly Schuller was named the new president of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association Thursday, replacing Meg Collins, who resigned in July.

Tisha Conoly Schuller
Tisha Conoly Schuller

In a release, Schuller, a vice president with Tetra Tech, a national environmental consulting and engineering firm, said this is a pivotal time for the natural gas industry in Colorado.

“An economic recession, climate change legislation, and the increase in renewables development all emphasize the importance of the natural gas industry,” Schuller said. “I’m interested in bringing oil and natural gas to the table to discuss how we can increase our contribution to economic and energy solutions in Colorado.”

A good start might be dropping COGA’s lawsuit challenging the nation’s most stringent drilling regulations regarding public health, air and water quality and wildlife habitat. Based on mounting opposition to drilling in hotspots such as New York and Pennsylvania, Colorado is merely ahead of a trend and won’t be at a competitive disadvantage over the long haul.

In other COGA news, public lands consultant and Mesa State College graduate David Ludlam was named as the new executive director of the trade group’s Western Slope Chapter, according to the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel.

Ludlam replaces former Mesa County commissioner Kathy Hall, who infamously in the documentary “Split Estate” said she’d had “fracking fluids in my mouth,” a reference to the perceived safety of undisclosed chemicals used in the controversial hydraulic fracturing process.

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