Denver Business Journal: University of Colorado study suggests major job loss from proposed fracking ban

Mar 26, 2014, 9:07am MDT Updated: Mar 26, 2014, 3:59pm MDT

By: Neil Westergaard and Heather Draper

Denver Business Journal

Fracking draws the ire of environmental activists, many of whom envision a world without the controversial process.

But economists from the University of Colorado (CU) predict job losses of 93,000, and $12 billion in lost gross domestic product (GDP), if proposed bans on hydraulic fracturing in Colorado become law, according to a study released Wednesday.

In just the first five years of a ban on fracking, the loss in GDP would be $8 billion and 68,000 fewer jobs, according to the study.

The implications for local and state governments are huge, too. The study put the losses in tax revenue for local and state governments at $985 million during the period from 2015 and 2040.

The study was based on a new dynamic modeling system being deployed by economic development agencies to measure the economic impact of public policy changes, such as the proposed ban on fracking.

Fracking bans, which have been adopted in a few communities, would extend such bans to oil and gas fields statewide as part of a proposed citizen initiatives for the November ballot.

Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, pumps a mixture of mostly water and sand and some chemicals deep into layers of shale to extract oil and natural gas.

Fracking has been used in the United States for more than 60 years and more than 90 percent of all wells today are fracked.

Link to full story here: http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/news/2014/03/26/university-of-colorado-study-suggests-major-job.html?ana=e_du_pap&s=article_du&ed=2014-03-26&page=all

Link to study here: http://media.bizj.us/view/img/2281201/economic-impact-of-fracking-moratorium-final-report-march-2014-032414.pdf

 

Denver Post Energy and Environment: Coalition Back’s Colorado’s Regulatory Right – And Might

By Joan Melcher

What’s the best way to regulate the oil and gas industry in Colorado? That’s a question that many are asking right now.

While activists advance two different initiatives allowing local governments to regulate or ban fracking of natural gas, a new coalition, Vital for Colorado, is rallying a broad range of civic, business and educational leaders to support oil and gas development under the state’s regulatory oversight.

Created last fall, Vital for Colorado has become more active in recent months. Members range from oil and gas associations and chambers of commerce to elected officials, dairy farmers and even lawn care companies. Its website features its Seven Principles pledge that, by the first week in March, had tallied more than 500 signatures, says Peter Moore, chairman of the board.

The pledge cites the importance of the oil and gas industry to the Colorado economy and notes that Colorado is a recognized national leader in energy regulation. It also points out that fracking has been used safely in the state for more than 60 years and that development of natural gas is essential to expansion of renewable energy.

“The energy industry in Colorado is regulated by many state agencies, including the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, state environmental regulatory agencies and by counties, typically through memoranda of understandings that the counties have established,” Moore says. He estimated that 10 or 20 people are consulted and must work together when industry wants to operate at a particular site.

Link to Full Article here: http://www.denverpost.com/energy-and-environment/sponsored?ccc=2106&cca=20140312-1

150+ MAYORS, COMMISSIONERS, AND CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS SIGN LETTER OPPOSING PROPOSALS THAT WOULD CREATE “REGULATORY CHAOS” FOR OIL AND GAS

For Immediate Release: March 10, 2014

Contact: Peter Moore (pmoore@polsinelli.com)

Rachel Nance (rnance@lrrlaw.com)

150+ MAYORS, COMMISSIONERS, AND CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS SIGN LETTER OPPOSING PROPOSALS THAT WOULD CREATE “REGULATORY CHAOS” FOR OIL AND GAS

Bipartisan Letter: “Attempts to end Colorado’s statewide approach to energy regulation would invite more politics into our energy policy, at a time when there is too much already, inevitably triggering regulatory chaos that chases energy investment to the many states that have embraced a balanced approach to energy development.”

Denver– Vital for Colorado, an organization of business leaders advocating for a responsible oil and gas policy, announced today that more than 150 current and former elected leaders from around the state signed an open letter critical of various pending and rumored ballot proposals that would “ban fracking” or create “a confusing patchwork” of local regulations around the state.

Vital for Colorado is running full page advertisements in select regional newspapers across Colorado profiling the letter signed by Republican, Democratic and Independent local officials, both current and past.

The full text of the letter and signers are below.

“CEO’s, elected officials, and other community leaders are uniting behind robust and responsible oil and gas development in Colorado,” said John Brackney, President and CEO of the South Metro Chamber of Commerce. “Colorado has the toughest, most rigorous regulations in the U.S., and a growing consensus of local government leaders agree with the business community, that creating regulatory chaos is irresponsible and wrong for our quality of life and our economy.”

“It’s incredibly telling when you see over 150 local elected officials — the very ones closest to this debate and know how to balance energy development, economic growth and environmental protection — come out and oppose these measures that allegedly claims to empower them. If they are against these kinds of ‘local control’ ballot measures, Coloradans everywhere should be asking who are the individuals behind this push to needlessly change our state constitution?” asked Chris Castilian, government relations manager for Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, a lead-member company for Coloradans for Responsible Energy Development (CRED).

“We’re honored to see this kind of unified opposition from local elected officials which also validates how seriously we take responsible oil and gas development in this state,” said Castilian.

—–

An Open Letter to Colorado’s Elected Leaders: 

As current and former locally elected officials in the Republican and Democratic parties, we want to thank those leaders in the state of Colorado who are using their influence to seek a sensible balance between energy development and conservation–one that ensures rigorous regulation and enforcement, but in a way that is applied consistently and efficiently so that Colorado remains an attractive place to do business. As those who follow this debate closely are aware, the State of Colorado does not take lightly its responsibility to manage, regulate, and oversee oil and gas development. In fact, our state has the most comprehensive and stringent regulations in the nation. Our fair state has seen significant energy development activity in the last few years, and our regulations have ensured that the development has not occurred at the expense of our environment. As we approach another election season, there may be attempts at the ballot box to change the way Colorado currently regulates the oil and gas industry. Rumors abound as to whether an initiative will attempt to ban development processes, like fracking, or turn our state into a confusing patchwork of inconsistency by transferring regulation of the industry to hundreds of local governments. Neither outcome is acceptable or responsible. Cities and counties across Colorado do not have adequate budgets in place, nor have we developed the in-house expertise to take over state regulation of oil and gas activities within our jurisdictions. Attempts to end Colorado’s statewide approach to energy regulation would invite more politics into our energy policy, at a time when there is too much already, inevitably triggering regulatory chaos that chases energy investment to the many states that have embraced a balanced approach to energy development. It doesn’t make sense to throw our current regulatory framework into chaos, when the system in place is working well. We applaud leaders who are opposing these measures and stand behind you in maintaining our existing regulatory system for energy development.

Sincerely,

Commissioner Erik Hansen (Adams County), Commissioner Rod Bockenfeld (Arapahoe County), Commissioner John Brackney* (Arapahoe County), Commissioner Nancy  Doty (Arapahoe County), Commissioner Polly Page* (Arapahoe County), Commissioner Nancy Sharpe (Arapahoe County), Commissioner Bernie Zimmer* (Arapahoe County), Mayor Steve    Hogan (City of Aurora), Mayor Pro-Tem Bob Roth (City of Aurora), Mayor Sue Horn (Town of Bennett), Commissioner Tom Wallace (Bent County), Trustee John M. Bauer (Town of Berthoud), Mayor Rick Pilgrim (Town of Bow Mar), Mayor Jeff Huff (City of Castle Pines), Mayor Paul Donahue (Town of Castle Rock), Councilmember Jennifer Green (Town of Castle Rock), Mayor Pro Tem Joe Procopio (Town of Castle Rock), Councilmember Sue Bosier* (City of Centennial), Mayor Randy Pye* (City of Centennial), Mayor Michael Wozniak (City of Cherry Hills Village), Commissioner Nancy Bogenhagen (Cheyenne County), Commissioner Rod Pelton (Cheyenne County), Commissioner Patrick Ward (Cheyenne County), President Pro Tem Merv Bennett (City of Colorado Springs), Councilmember Angela Dougan* (City of Colorado Springs), President Keith King (City of Colorado Springs), Mayor Gale Christy (Town of Columbine Valley), Councilmember Roland Cole* (Commerce City), Councilmember Ray Beck (City of Craig), Councilmember Kent Nielson (City of Craig), Commissioner Tobe Allumbaugh (Crowley County), Commissioner Gary Gibson (Crowley County), Commissioner Frank Grant (Crowley County), Mayor Ed Sisson (City of Delta), Commissioner Doug Atchely (Delta County), Commissioner Bruce Hovde (Delta County), Commissioner Olen Lund* (Delta County), Commissioner Mark Roeber (Delta County), Mayor Richard Blakely (Town of Dinosaur), Councilmember Toby Cortez (Town of Dinosaur), Councilmember Bruce Long (Town of Dinosaur), Councilmember Devonna Wilczek (Town of Dinosaur), Commissioner Jack Hilbert (Douglas County), Commissioner Roger Partridge (Douglas County), Commissioner Jill Repella (Douglas County), Mayor Bonnie McNulty (City of Edgewater), Commissioner Sallie Clark (El Paso County), Commissioner Darryl Glenn (El Paso County), Commissioner Dennis Hisey (El Paso County), Commissioner Amy Latham (El Paso County), Commissioner Peggy Littleton (El Paso County), Commissioner Robert Rowland (Elbert County), Commissioner Kurt Schlegel (Elbert County), Mayor Lyle Achziger (City of Evans), Councilmember Laura Brown (City of Evans), Councilmember Mark Clark (City of Evans), Mayor Chad Auer (Town of Firestone), Mayor Ray Martinez* (City of Fort Collins), Councilmember Ken McCloud* (City of Fort Morgan), Commissioner Debbie Bell (Fremont County), Commissioner Ed Norden (Fremont County), Councilmember Stacey Mascarenas (City of Fruita), Commissioner Tom Jankovsky (Garfield County), Commissioner John Martin (Garfield County), Commissioner Mike Samson (Garfield County), Commissioner Larry McCown* (Garfield County), Councilmember Jeff Allen (City of Glendale), Mayor Pro Tem Paula Bovo (City of Glendale), Mayor Mike Dunafon (City of Glendale), Councilmember Scott Franssen (City of Glendale), Mayor Larry Harte* (City of Glendale), Councilmember Dario Katardzic (City of Glendale), Councilmember R. Wayne King (City of Glendale), Councilmember Patricia Opper (City of Glendale), Councilmember David Merritt* (City of Glenwood Springs), Councilmember Jim Doody (City of Grand Junction), Councilmember Duncan McArthur (City of Grand Junction), Councilmember Phyllis Norris (City of Grand Junction), Mayor Gregg Palmer* (City of Grand Junction), Mayor Sam Susuras (City of Grand Junction), Councilmember Barbara Traylor Smith (City of Grand Junction), Commissioner Perry Anderson* (Gunnison County), Commissioner Roger Cain* (Huerfano County), Commissioner Scott King* (Huerfano County), Commissioner Ben Clayton (Jackson County), Commissioner Jim Murphy (Jackson County), Commissioner Lanny Weddle (Jackson County), Commissioner Faye Griffin (Jefferson County), Commissioner Don Rosier (Jefferson County), Commissioner J. Paul Brown* (La Plata County), Mayor Steve Burkholder* (City of Lakewood), Mayor Bob Murphy (City of Lakewood), Commissioner Greg King (Lincoln County), Mayor Phil Cernanec (City of Littleton), Mayor Susan Thornton* (City of Littleton), Mayor Jim Gunning (City of Lone Tree), Councilmember Kim Monson (City of Lone Tree), Councilmember John Fogle (City of Loveland), Councilmember Hugh McKean (City of Loveland), Commissioner Steve Acquafresca (Mesa County), Commissioner Doralyn Genova* (Mesa County), Commissioner Kathy Hall* (Mesa County), Commissioner John Justman (Mesa County), Commissioner Craig Meis* (Mesa County), Commissioner Rose Pugliese (Mesa County), Commissioner Janet Rowland* (Mesa County), Commissioner Audrey Danner* (Moffat County), Commissioner Tom Gray* (Moffat County), Commissioner Chuck Grobe (Moffat County), Commissioner John Kinkaid (Moffat County), Commissioner Tom Mathers (Moffat County), Councilmember Kathy Ellis (City of Montrose), Commissioner Gary Ellis (Montrose County), Commissioner Ron Henderson (Montrose County), Commissioner David White (Montrose County), Commissioner Dave Ubell* (Montrose County), Mayor Travis Easton (Town of Monument), Mayor Kathleen Novak* (City of Northglenn), Councilmember Michael Krueger* (Town of Palisade), Trustee Mary Allbee (Town of Parachute), Mayor Judith Beasley (Town of Parachute), Councilmember John Loschke (Town of Parachute), Trustee Roy McClung (Town of Parachute), Trustee Tom Rugaard (Town of Parachute), Mayor Pro-Tem Juanita Williams (Town of Parachute), Trustee John Yadloski (Town of Parachute), Commissioner K. Joe Kinnie (Phillips County), Commissioner Donald Lock (Phillips County), Commissioner Harlan Stern (Phillips County), Mayor Ann Brady* (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Brad Casto (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Dan Eddy (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Clayton Gohr (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Lisa Hatch (Town of Rangely), Mayor Frank Huitt (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Joseph Nielsen (Town of Rangely), Mayor Pro-tem Elaine Urie (Town of Rangely), Councilmember Hans Parkinson (City of Rifle), Commissioner Jeff Eskelson (Rio Blanco County), Commissioner Jon Hill (Rio Blanco County), Commissioner Peg Rector* (Rio Blanco County), Commissioner Gene Bauerle (Sedgwick County), Commissioner James Beck (Sedgwick County), Commissioner Glen Sandquist (Sedgwick County), Trustee Robert Brown (Town of Severance), Trustee Tim Reichel (Town of Severance), Trustee Beverly Schneider (Town of Severance), Mayor Dave Moore (Town of Silt), Councilmember Jan Kulmann (City of Thornton), Mayor Heidi Williams (City of Thornton), Commissioner Sean Conway (Weld County), Commissioner Dean Wingfield (Yuma County)

*denotes former elected position held

###

/ In News / By Katelyn Roberts / Comments Off on 150+ MAYORS, COMMISSIONERS, AND CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS SIGN LETTER OPPOSING PROPOSALS THAT WOULD CREATE “REGULATORY CHAOS” FOR OIL AND GAS

Denver Post Guest Commentary: Oil and gas provides vital benefits to Colorado

By Sens. Lois Tochtrop and Mary  Hodge
Guest Commentary

Posted:   03/04/2014  03:19:02 PM MST
Updated:   03/06/2014 10:40:57 AM MST
Common sense is too often in short supply when it comes to the state  legislative process. As two long-time Democratic senators representing working  families, we’ve worked hard to keep the common sense flowing when it comes to  important Colorado issues and hold back on the partisan lather.

Few issues in our state need a common-sense approach more than energy  policy. Unfortunately, some in the public discourse have lost sight of the vital  role that oil and gas plays in a balanced energy policy, and the unequivocal  fact that Colorado has passed —  and continues to develop —  the toughest, most  comprehensive, and environmentally protective energy regulations in the  country.

Meanwhile, others too quickly gloss over the fact that even in this new  energy economy, we need clean-burning natural gas as back-up for those times  when the wind doesn’t blow and the sun doesn’t shine. Still others seem prone to  ignore the reality that more than 100,000 hard-working Coloradans rely on the  oil and gas sector to put food on the table, put kids through school, and save  for retirement.

If we refuse to see the vital benefits of responsible oil and gas  development, we won’t. If we can continue to produce natural gas safely,  and if  natural gas is the cleanest, most effective form of back-up power for wind and  solar,  why on earth wouldn’t we embrace a sensible approach to natural gas  development in this state? The truth is, we should and we are.

Link to full article here: Oil and gas provides vital benefits to Colorado – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/opinion/ci_25273032/oil-and-gas-provides-vital-benefits-colorado#ixzz2wLg6m0hh

Denver Business Journal: New Colorado business group aims to counter anti-fracking movement

Mar 5, 2014, 6:14pm MST   

By Cathy Proctor
Denver Business Journal

A new coalition of 43 business and civic groups along with dozens of businesses and individuals from across Colorado has been formed to advocate for the state’s oil and gas industry.

The group is called Vital for Colorado. Its website is here.

“We’re trying to build a statewide organization of businessmen and women to advocate and educate on behalf of responsible energy development,” said Peter Moore, an attorney with law firm Polsinelli’s Denver office and chairman of the new group. “We believe that Colorado is a leader in the country with regard to regulation and it [the oil and gas industry] is very important to the state.”

A list of the groups, businesses and individuals who have signed onto Vital for Colorado is available here.

Colorado’s oil and gas industry has been the source of controversy in the last few years as drilling rigs have moved closer to Denver’s suburban neighborhoods on the north and east sides of the metro area. Energy companies are investing billions into their northern Colorado operations in the Denver-Julesburg Basin, where new wells are producing increasing amounts of oil and natural gas liquids.

Voters in five Front Range cities have approved bans or years-long moratoriums on the use of hydraulic fracturing, better known as fracking, a technology that’s been used for decades in the oil and gas fields, and one that industry executives say is critical to oil and gas production.

Fracking uses water, sand and chemicals to crack underground rock formations to allow oil and gas to flow into a well faster.

The industry says the practice is safe, but some environmental groups, community organizations and elected officials are worried about the health and environmental impacts of fracking — and about all oil and gas operations in general.

The formation of the business group is in response to “various attempts by environmental activists to make it easier for local governments to ban energy development,” according to Vital for Colorado’s announcement.

In the last few weeks, ballot proposals have been filed that would ask voters to approve giving local governments more control over oil and gas operations, or ban all business activities that community leaders don’t want to see in their towns.

But the group sees the ballot proposals as taking aim at a vital, statewide industry that provides about $30 billion a year in economic activity.

Said Moore in the group’s launch announcement: “It isn’t just oil and gas companies who will suffer if these attempts to hijack our state’s energy policy succeed. The entire economy of this great state – from men and women working along the main streets of rural Colorado to those occupying the high rises in downtown Denver – will suffer dramatically if this anti-oil and gas extremism prevails.”

Link to full article here: http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/blog/earth_to_power/2014/03/new-colorado-business-group-aims-to.html?page=all

VITAL FOR COLORADO TO RALLY BUSINESS, CIVIC LEADERS IN SUPPORT OF BALANCED STATEWIDE OIL AND GAS DEVELOPMENT

For Immediate Release:
March 5, 2014

Contact: Peter Moore (pmoore@polsinelli.com)
Rachel Nance (rnance@lrrlaw.com)
‘VITAL FOR COLORADO’ TO RALLY BUSINESS, CIVIC LEADERS IN SUPPORT OF BALANCED STATEWIDE OIL AND GAS DEVELOPMENT

VITAL CHAIRMAN: “It isn’t just oil and gas companies who will suffer if these attempts to hijack our state’s energy policy succeed. The entire economy of this great state – from men and women working along the main streets of rural Colorado to those occupying the high rises in downtown Denver – will suffer dramatically if this anti-oil and gas extremism prevails”

DENVER – A coalition of the leading business and civic organizations across the state of Colorado, calling itself Vital for Colorado, has formed to advocate for a responsible oil and gas policy, it was announced today. The group’s launch comes amid various attempts by environmental activists to make it easier for local governments to ban energy development.

“Colorado is a state known for a balanced, thoughtful approach to doing business,” said Peter Moore, a local attorney and Chairman of the Board for Vital for Colorado. “As narrow-minded interest groups try to undo that balance in our energy policy, Vital for Colorado is determined to tell the rest of the story, from the vantage of business men and women across this state.

“It isn’t just oil and gas companies who will suffer if these attempts to hijack our state’s energy policy succeed. The entire economy of this great state – from men and women working along the main streets of rural Colorado to those occupying the high rises in downtown Denver – will suffer dramatically if this anti-oil and gas extremism prevails,” Moore said.

“Vital for Colorado is appropriately named,” said Rachel Nance, a senior consultant retained by Vital for Colorado, who also is a Principal with Lewis Roca Rothgerber, former senior adviser to Governor Bill Owens and past Vice President of the Colorado Realtors Association. “A thoughtful energy policy that embraces sensible production of oil and gas and respect of property rights is Vital to Colorado, our economy, our schools, social services and thousands of charitable organizations in communities east to west. And just the same, in the face of the hype and hyperbole being targeted at hydraulic fracturing, it is vital that the broader business community asserts its voice in this critical debate.

“Vital for Colorado supports a balanced energy policy that includes responsible oil and gas development, and our goal is to unify like-minded citizens and organization all across.”

Vital for Colorado’s mission is to promote the benefits of energy production in Colorado, highlight energy resource extraction as a critical part of Colorado’s state economy, and support a rational, well-regulated, and competitive regulatory environment which allows energy production in the state to thrive responsibly. Vital for Colorado is composed of a volunteer board of women and men business leaders from across the state. For more information please visit www.vitalforcolorado.com
Its board of Directors and Advisors include:

Board Members:

Peter Moore, Attorney

Chuck Berry, President, Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry
John Brackney, President and CEO, South Metro Denver Chamber
Michael Dunafon, Mayor, City of Glendale
Jack Hays, CEO and President, Resource West

Michelle Smith, Rockies President, National Association of Royalty Owners
Dr. Becky Takeda-Tinker, President, CSU Global Campus

John Zimmerman, President, Denver Investments
Advisory Board Members:

Kelly J. Brough, President, Denver Metro Chamber
Kittie L. Hook, Senior VP Corporate Services, Cassidy Turley
Kristin Strohm, Executive Director, Common Sense Policy Roundtable
Tamra J. Ward, President, Colorado Concern

# # #

Colorado: A Vital Solution

The American way of life is supported by technology-driven tools; electricity for its workplaces and homes; and by gasoline for its automobiles and airplanes.  It is a lifestyle that demands increasing levels of energy from a fuel mix of renewable sources, hydropower, nuclear power, oil, natural gas, and coal.  It is also a lifestyle that has impacted the U.S. national debt which continues to grow at an alarming daily rate, all at a time when the U.S. population is dramatically aging, the unemployment rate of non-retirees remains stubbornly stuck at 7-percent, the best and brightest can be sourced globally, and less than one-third of Americans have a college degree.

With U.S. Federal debt support unsustainable, it is likely to dramatically slow if not cease, and when that occurs, how will intelligent, hardworking Americans maintain their desired standard of living?  How can Americans help position the U.S. as the number one nation in the world with strength and independence, and with citizenry that can earn a livable wage despite global competition and a declining belief in the value of higher education?  From a fact-based perspective, oil and gas development is a feasible solution.

In 2012, the development of oil and natural gas shale resources supported more than 2.1 million jobs, and for the first time in decades, decreased U.S. dependence on foreign oil dependence1.  Furthermore, the American Chemistry Council projected that an additional 25-percent increase in the supply of ethane derived from shale gas could add over 400,000 American jobs, provide over $4.4 billion in tax revenues per year, and drive $16.2 billion in capital investment.  Such an increase could also provide U.S. manufacturers with low cost fuel to spur global competition to increase American employment and lower feedstock and energy costs.

Shale energy sources are derived from hydraulic fracturing which has been used since the 1940’s in more than one million wells in the U.S. to produce oil and natural gas.  The technique uses a 90-percent water, 9.5-percent sand, and .5-percent fluid mixture that is pumped into underground rock layers to free trapped oil and gas.  The EPA’s program to regulate fracturing has been in existence for the last 30 years and has regulated over 800,000 wells in industries that include oil and gas.  The EPA’s efforts have proven effective as to- date, and there has been no identified water pollution instances caused by the fracturing process2.

Fracturing uses wells that are drilled away from drinking water wells, which are encased with steel and layers of concrete to provide a safe barrier to protect the water table3.  Additionally, federal, state and local government regulations help to protect the environment through rules that cover well permits, well materials and construction, safe disposal of hydraulic fracturing fluid, water testing and recordkeeping.  Air emissions from production activities are also carefully monitored, managed, and reported in accordance with the Clean Air Act; and seismologists and geologists across the country have already determined that hydraulic fracturing activity only produces slight vibrations which do not trigger any other seismic activities.

In Colorado, over 43,000 oil and gas wells existed by 2012 with over 8,000 new leases filed between 2010 and 20114.  Oil and gas production through fracturing is a state industry that provides millions of dollars in revenues and is responsible for hundreds of jobs.  Nonetheless, in the November 2013 election, four Colorado cities of Boulder, Broomfield, Fort Collins, and Lafayette voted to ban fracturing activities while the State Supreme Court has forbidden cities from outright drilling bans.  As the bans are expected to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has continued to work to increase oversight and regulations on oil and gas drilling activities for safety and nuisance mitigation measures. Can a state rich in mineral resources, with a Governor that understands the economic value of fracturing, provide assurance to its citizens to abate their fears?  As the Federal government slows its rate of debt issuance, preservation of the American lifestyle will once again be the focus as energy prices rise and Americans seek work that provides a livable wage. The citizens of Colorado are uniquely positioned to provide a solution that supports not only Coloradans but all Americans while enhancing the nation’s position in the world- it is not only a viable solution, it is one too vital not to pursue.

 

Becky Takeda-Tinker, Ph.D.

Vital for Colorado Board Member

 

1 American Petroleum Institute, 2012.

2 Yergin, David.  The Quest. New York: Penguin, 2012. Print.

3 EnergyFromShale.org. Shale Answers, 2013. API.

4 Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Committee, 2013.

Colorado energy measure would create regulatory chaos

Tamra J. Ward, Kelly Brough and John Brackney

Denver Post Opinion 1/23/2014

Stifling energy exploration and  eliminating family-sustaining jobs —   through a statewide patchwork of local statutes —  is the aim of a new  initiative that Colorado voters could see as early as this November. It’s  important to sound the alarm bells early and often about this proposal, which is  fraught with problems.

The proposed measure would give   local governments the power —  without  limitation —  “to enact local laws establishing, defining, altering, or  eliminating the rights, powers, and duties of for-profit business entities,  operating or seeking to operate in the community, to prevent such rights and  powers from usurping or otherwise conflicting with the fundamental rights of  people, their communities, and the natural environment.”

That’s a huge net that could snare thousands of responsible, productive and  law-abiding businesses   employing hundreds of thousands of Coloradans. Frankly,  we aren’t even sure the drafters of this ballot issue understand  its  ramifications. Such a law could place regulation of air quality, water quality,  rules of the road and anything else related to our “natural environment” in the  hands of local government.

Make no mistake: The intention is to add yet another section to Colorado’s  overstuffed constitution and ban hydraulic fracturing,  a safe and heavily  regulated practice. The reality is that, if passed, this measure could create  environmental and economic chaos from one corner of Colorado to the other.

Fracking has been used for more than 60 years to extract natural gas from  deep below the earth’s surface. Recent scientific innovations, combined with the  identification of new natural gas reserves in Colorado and other parts of the  country, offer the near-term potential for American energy independence.

Today, energy exploration is heavily regulated by the state and federal  governments, and properly so. In the past few years, Colorado enacted stringent,  statewide regulations on energy exploration.

Colorado’s regulations are a model for the rest of the nation. They were  developed  when environmental groups and oil and gas companies joined to find  answers. They put a premium on environmental protection and safety while  ensuring that our state’s vital energy industry can continue to operate here,  employing more than 110,000 Coloradans and contributing $29.5 billion in  economic activity.

The key is to provide statewide predictability and consistency. It’s just not  possible or practical for hundreds of local governments to enact differing  standards for the protection of natural resources, such as clean air and clean  water, that are of statewide significance.

Coloradans deserve the high standards put in place today that ensure we are  breathing clean air and drinking clean water, regardless of our city limits .

Should this measure pass and be enshrined in our state’s constitution,  consider the cost to local taxpayers. We would have armies of new inspectors to  review local energy sites for compliance because local standards will differ  from state standards. This will require thousands of new government employees  who will drain dollars away from vital local services.

Colorado has prospered as one of the most productive states in America and  one of the great places to live in the world because of what we accomplished  together. Giving local governments sweeping new power,  “eliminating  the  rights, powers and duties of for-profit business entities” for any reason (or no  reason)  would be devastating to job growth and our quality of life.

It’s vital that Coloradans read the fine print in this and other bans on  energy exploration as 2014 unfolds. In this case, the devil is most definitely  in the details.

Tamra J. Ward is president and CEO of Colorado Concern. Kelly J. Brough is  president and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. John Brackney is    president and CEO of the South Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce. All are members  of Vital for Colorado (vitalforcolorado.com).

Read more: Colorado energy measure would create regulatory chaos – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/opinion/ci_24980394/energy-ballot-measure-colorado-would-create-regulatory-chaos#ixzz2rKdYi2bS

 

From the Motley Fool: Fracking Fueled This $100 Billion Revival in America

By Matthew DiLallo
December 5, 2013

Manufacturing is coming back to America. The numbers are quite stunning, actually. Estimates suggest that nearly $100 billion is being spent to bring manufacturing back to America.

What’s almost as surprising is this revival in the manufacturing sector isn’t due to some new government program or business-friendly tax break. The single reason why manufacturing is coming back to America is because fracking has unlocked so much low-cost natural gas.

According to Energy in Depth, the cumulative known investment in manufacturing currently sits at 117 projects totaling $80 billion. But there are estimates suggesting the number is closer to $100 billion. Not only that, the employment impact of these projects is equally as staggering. Current estimates project 515,000 jobs being created from America’s manufacturing rebirth.

From plastics to fertilizer plants, the manufacturing boom features several projects that are only possible with low-cost natural-gas supplies. That’s because natural gas is an important feedstock used by these manufacturers to create the products we need for our everyday lives.

One word: plastics A great example of this is the proposed world-scale ethane cracker that Sasol  (NYSE: SSL  )  wants to build in Louisiana. The multi-billion-dollar project would produce ethylene, which would then be used to make products such as synthetic fibers, detergents, fragrances, paints, film, and food packaging.

This is actually one of two major projects that Sasol is planning to build as the company could invest up to $21 billion in the U.S. What’s remarkable is that Sasol is a South African company, so this investment would be one of the largest foreign investments ever made in the U.S. The projects would create 1,200 permanent jobs, 7,000 construction jobs, and more than 50,000 indirect jobs. This is all thanks to the natural gas abundance unlocked by fracking.

American manufacturers like Dow Chemical  (NYSE: DOW  )  are investing billions to expand manufacturing capacity in the U.S. Dow Chemical is also planning a new ethane cracker along with three other projects. It sees these projects creating 600 permanent jobs along with 2,000 construction jobs and another 35,000 indirect jobs.

Fertilizing a boom There are several new fertilizer plants planned, including two expansion projects from CF Industries  (NYSE: CF  ) . Strong and growing nitrogen demand, combined with low-cost natural-gas resources, makes these billion dollar investments by CF Industries possible.

That’s also important to the American farmer as more than half of the nitrogen used in the U.S. is currently imported. Natural gas is a key input in creating nitrogen fertilizer, and it’s so cheap thanks to fracking that it makes economic sense and cents to manufacture more nitrogen-based fertilizer products in the U.S.

Final thoughts While fracking gets a bad name in the press, it has single-handedly brought a revival in manufacturing to America. What that means is that not only will the average American spend less on energy each year, but we’ll also spend less on energy-intensive products as the manufacturing boom takes hold. Despite the doom-and-gloom headlines we see all the time, the future in America, thanks to fracking, is brighter than ever.

Full Article at:

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