By Amy Harder – The National Journal
Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper of Colorado plans to announce a framework targeting methane—a potent greenhouse gas—as part of his state’s regulations controlling fracking.
“We are very close now—within the week—to hammering out a specific methane regulatory framework that I think will make sure people’s air is much cleaner than what some of their fears would lead them to believe,” Hickenlooper said in an interview with National Journal Tuesday. His office confirmed an announcement is expected next week.
In both politics and energy production, Colorado is a bellwether state. So how Hickenlooper moves forward on these issues will be a key indicator of how other states and the country as a whole move forward.
Colorado, which has traditionally ranked in the top 10 of the country’s oil and natural-gas producing states, has more than doubled its oil production and increased its gas production by 30 percent since 2005. In that same period, another trend began: Colorado’s politics shifted from red, where they were in the 1990’s and early 2000’s, to blue. After George W. Bush won the state with 52 percent of the vote in 2004, Barack Obama carried the state comfortably in both 2008 and 2012.