Excerpts from an article in the Coloradoan, with my comments in orange
LOVELAND — "..Fracking detractors are trying to “scare the crap out of everybody with the wrong facts and making things up,” said Weld County Commissioner Barbara Kirkmeyer, who was moderating the discussion between COGCC Director Matt Lepore and Anadarko regulatory affairs manager Brad Miller.
“The problem we have, we have a group of folks on the other side who don’t care about the truth,” she said. “They’re out there saying all sorts of things about how it’s contaminating the groundwater, and, you know, that’s not true,” Kirkmeyer said.
Is she lying or merely ignorant of the real facts posted in a series of PowerPoint slides on the website of the the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission she's trying to defend? These numbers from 2012 do show there's been groundwater contamination.
What was spilled?
What was done about them?
And what to make of Matt Lepore's statement?
"..residents “storm city hall and demand you protect their health, safety and welfare armed with misinformation,” [he]said Tuesday, speaking at the Northern Colorado Energy Summit."
As the director of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission he surely has seen, and also approved these slides! Here is one from another presentation, probably put up after Governor Hickenlooper took a sip of Frac Fluid!
He also said the following.
If you look at the demographics of anti-fracking activists, he said, they are generally affluent enough not to be concerned with the cost of home heating and cooling, he said.
Clearly, those who struggle to make a living are so bogged down in simply trying to survive that they have no time to get informed of anything of importance, including how gas and oil production may endanger their and their children's health.
“A ban on fracking is really a ban on drilling,” he said. “A ban on fracking means an increase in coal use to generate electricity. It means an increase in local costs of electricity.”
Have you seen a decrease in your energy bills? I haven't! Besides, how can opponents be blamed for driving up the prices, since drilling is still in full swing almost everywhere in the country?
When asked by a member of the audience whether the oil and gas industry should work with local school districts to educate kids about the value of oil and gas as a way to boost industry public relations, both Miller and Kirkmeyer said such plans are already underway. “We have to educate the youth and start there, and we also have to educate the general public as well,” Miller said. “Both of those programs need to start now. The industry is starting that.” Kirkmeyer said Weld County is working with at least one school district in the county to teach kids about the importance of industry.
If there is any hope for a future for today's children and their kids at all, it does not lie in fossil fuels, but in renewable energy and sustainable livelihoods. That is what schools should focus on. It is bad enough gas wells are sprouting up close to people's homes, and that 67 wells are planned within a quarter of a mile of Frontier Academy along 29th street. Read: Where Do The Children Play
In an earlier speech, Mercator Energy President and Western Energy Alliance board member John Harpole said fracking is good for poor people because the more fracking done in the U.S, the more natural gas will be available to drive down consumers’ cost for heating.
Fracking is actually bad, especially for poor people who may feel forced to work in the oil and gas fields to make a living, and will compromise their health in doing so. Furthermore, people in poor neighborhoods do not have the opportunity to protest a proposed well site nearby.
So far, protests have indeed come from those residents who are more affluent, but they are fully supported in their plight by people from all over Greeley, who not only want to help them but anyone anywhere who will be affected by the intrusion of noise, hazards and polluted air. With hundreds of wells already producing within city limits, we all are breathing VOCs and ozone molecules.