Oil and gas drilling fuels debate over self-government, state interest

 

Horizontal Drilling Rig in Weld County Colorado - Credit Niobrara News

Horizontal Drilling Rig in Weld County Colorado – Credit Niobrara News

By Bruce Finley – The Denver Post – 03/12/2013

Colorado residents chafing at the rapidly expanding oil and gas operations along the Front Range are pressuring their local governments for protection from industrial light, noise, vibration and pollution within city limits.

But state officials insist they alone have the right to regulate how and where the industry does its drilling. State attorneys are fighting local governments that try to impose their own rules.

This fuels a growing movement of residents wondering whether the local home-rule form of government established in Colorado’s Constitution means no rule when it comes to oil and gas.

“The state has failed to protect us and is — in fact — acting on behalf of the oil-and-gas industry to try to ram hazardous drilling and fracking down our throats,” said Dave Gardner, director of Colorado Springs Citizens for Community Rights.

“So we’re forced to protect our citizens by asserting our home-rule authority,” he said. “If this must be defended in court, we’ll defend it. We’re confident the courts will ultimately validate our right.”

Read more:Oil and gas drilling fuels debate over self-government, state interest – The Denver Post

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