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Gary Osier was Assistant District Ranger and Forest Minerals Specialist at the Rifle Ranger District of the White River National Forest for 20 of his 32-year U.S. Forest Service career. He retired in 2003 but still knows the Thompson Divide almost by heart. He recently spoke with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about two natural gas wells proposed by Houston-based SG Interests near 4 Mile Park. Their conversation begins with the exact location of the proposed wells.
The agency that regulates oil and gas drilling in Colorado is considering new rules that could mandate water quality testing by drilling companies, and increase the required distance between gas wells and existing buildings. Kirby Wynn, Garfield County's Oil and Gas Liaison, briefed the county's Energy Advisory Board Thursday night on the draft regulations written by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. KDNK's Nelson Harvey was there and has this report.
At the Garfield County board of commissioners meeting Monday morning, locals responded to news of a new drilling application in the Thompson Divide. KDNK's Eric Skalac was there and has this report.
Texas-based SG Interests recently filed an application to drill a gas lease in the Thompson Divide area. The Bureau of Land Management, or BLM, and the US Forest Service are reviewing the application, and once they deem it complete, the two agencies will initiate an environmental assessment process.
KDNK's Eric Skalac spoke to the BLM spokesman David Boyd to find out what that process would entail.
When the boundaries of Colorado House District 57 were redrawn over the last year, Garfield, Rio Blanco and Moffat counties were left with an open race and no incumbent. As the 2012 elections approach, the district 57 candidates have used this opportunity to shape the discussion around issues like education reform, balancing the state's budget and the health and economic impacts of energy extraction.
Republican candidate Bob Rankin stopped by the KDNK studio this week to discuss some of those very issues.
KDNK's Eric Skalac asked Rankin about his stance on the efforts of the Thompson Divide Coalition to restrict or eliminate gas drilling leases and about the broader issue of balancing multiple uses on land coveted by diverse interests.
When the boundaries of district 57 were redrawn over the last year, Garfield, Rio Blanco and Moffat counties were left with an open race and no incumbent. As the 2012 elections approach, the district 57 candidates have used this opportunity to shape the discussion around issues like education reform, balancing the state's budget and the health and economic impacts of energy extraction.
Democratic candidate Jo Ann Baxter came by the KDNK studio on First Friday to talk about the important issues this campaign season. And in Garfield County, few issues capture the public's interest like gas drilling.
KDNK's Eric Skalac asked Baxter about the controversy surrounding municipal regulations for mineral extraction, and the state's lawsuit against the town of Longmont for defining their own gas drilling rules.
For Baxter's views on education reform, water conservation and medical marijuana, click here.
The newly minted director of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission came to Garfield County last week. The former environmental lawyer talked about the current agenda and priorities at the state's regulating commission for gas and oil. KDNK's Marilyn Gleason brings a report.
At a meeting in Basalt last week, citizens from the Roaring Fork Valley and Sal Pace, Democratic candidate for Colorado's 3rd Congressional District, all talked about the impacts of natural gas drilling south of Carbondale and Glenwood Springs. Area ranchers, environmental groups, and others discussed the possible impacts to wildlife habitat, local water sources, cattle grazing, and the tourist economy of local towns. They told Pace they're not against natural gas drilling; they just don't want it on the Thompson Divide.
But, what makes the fight to keep energy companies out of Thompson Divide different from those who simply don't want gas drilling in their backyards?
KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh was at the Basalt meeting and brings this report.
Tuesday night, Carbondale trustees again discussed drilling in the Thompson Divide. This time though, they were talking about the impact heavy trucks involved in gas drilling could have on Carbondale's West Main Street. KDNK's Eric Skalac spoke with town manager Jay Harrington after the meeting to find out more about the proposal put together by Schmueser Gordon Meyer, or SGM.
Carbondale trustees got a visit from EnCana Corporation Tuesday night, when an engineer and a stakeholder relations advisor gave a presentation on hydraulic fracturing.
EnCana is one of the largest natural gas operators in the country, and here in Garfield County, they're a major player in the extraction of natural gas. Last night, engineer Mark Balderston assured the board that because of the use of best practices when it comes to safety, they're in control of the "whole situation, all the time".
KDNK Eric Skalac caught up with Balderston after his presentation to the board to find out more about what happens to wells once they're depleted, and about how spills of produced water are treated.