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The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) today unanimously approved a new rule requiring oil and gas companies to fully disclose the chemicals used in the controversial but commonplace drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
Even as state oil and gas regulators mull over new rules for the disclosure of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, the Colorado Supreme Court is pondering whether citizen activist groups can intervene on matters like the ultimate frack job in 1969 using a 43-kiloton nuclear bomb.
Counties across Colorado are gearing up for the next major oil and gas boom, scrambling to draft local regulations for everything from visual impacts to physical setbacks of drilling equipment. But state officials are increasingly flexing their regulatory muscles, and industry representatives fear more local regs will slow the next boom before it’s in full swing.
Western Slope oil and gas watchdog groups this week questioned whether the new board members appointed to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) last week by Gov. John Hickenlooper will lean too heavily toward industry and Front Range concerns.
Gov. John Hickenlooper today dismissed the fears of activists and community members concerned that the natural gas drilling process of hydraulic fracturing can contaminate groundwater supplies, but he conceded the state should require the industry to disclose chemicals used in the “fracking” process.
Some of the biggest natural gas producers in Colorado are part of a coalition of operators in the massive Marcellus Shale play in the eastern United States that is backing “full disclosure” of chemicals used in the controversial drilling process called hydraulic fracturing. But critics say those same companies – specifically EnCana and the Williams Companies – have a different standard when it comes to hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” in Colorado.
The debate over the health of the natural gas industry will shape the 2010 campaign for the governor’s office, key seats in the state legislature and even local-level county commissioner races. Unsurprisingly, there are fundamental disagreements about what is happening on the ground in gas country.
Oil and gas industry representatives this week continued to assail a phone survey in Colorado’s Third Congressional District showing overwhelming support for federal regulation of a natural-gas drilling process called hydraulic fracturing.
GLENWOOD SPRINGS -- Oil and gas industry watchdog groups in Garfield County want the state to dramatically step up groundwater testing near gas drilling operations in the wake of new evidence that hydraulic fracturing may have contaminated drinking-water wells in Wyoming.
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