Business as Usual

In a hastily organized special meeting on Tuesday (2/15), the GarCo BOCC accepted Antero’s proposed settlement to withdraw their request to the COGCC for 10-acre spacing – for the immediate future – and other minor concessions.

Garfield County accepts Antero settlement
Withdraws formal interventions in plans for intensified gas drilling on two Silt Mesa parcels

Of course this was expected because the BOCC had narrowed their intervention to Antero’s application with the COGCC, and that has been withdrawn for the time being.

In the past, the BOCC directed Antero to hold public meetings about the issue. Therefore it was surprising that they only gave the public a 24-hour notice of the meeting. I didn’t hear anything about it. I’m curious what they considered to be “public notice”. So much for caring about public input.

Not that it matters anymore. For the time being, public outcry has delayed the application. I know the folks at Antero and the BOCC would like us all to move along, nothing more to see here. What they have failed to understand is that this is what happens when gas well drilling occurs near populated areas. When people can see the drill rigs from their homes. When they can hear the drilling activity. When they can smell it in the air. Feel it on their skin. Taste it on their tongues. Antero put their rigs up last summer and opened up a hornets’ nest. I congratulate the members of RSPN. They raised awareness. They delayed the process. They succeeded.

Lisa Bracken has been going through this with Encana for years up on Divide Creek. It’s too late for Divide Creek. Go read her blog. Think the Colorado River has not been polluted by gas well drilling? Think again. Look at the photos. Eventually it all flows into the Colorado River.

We cannot let Antero do to our communities what Encana has done to Divide Creek. It’s not too late. Things have changed. Public awareness about the impacts and dangers of natural gas drilling is at an all-time high. This is not the end of anything. This is a new beginning.

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