- Green Minute
- Green Campuses
- Green Media
- Contact Us
Just this summer, one company had three spills in Weld county alone that included highly toxic substances. Benzene, a known carcinogen, was confirmed to be found in groundwater.
In Colorado, about eight wells are being drilled each day. But The Post found that:
The spills are unacceptable. Any industry with that many accidents has a serious problem that needs to be fixed before it continues operating. But regulators continue to permit new wells. I think there is a combination of factors at work: not enough inspectors, inspectors and regulators are not strict enough, rules are not protective enough, and companies do not have strong safety standards in place. I also could not find any of these spills in the on-line database of the National Response Center, even though all spills are supposed to be reported there. The result is that public health and the environment are not being adequately protected.
The Post points out that the oil and gas industry opposes stronger regulations. Recently an industry official was quoted as saying that: ”The public is skeptical of anything we say. The favorable perception of the oil and gas industry polls at seven percent…..” It was suggested that the industry hire new messengers to improve its public perception, but it really doesn’t matter who the messenger is. The public understands the facts: the oil and gas industry is a major polluter–contaminating air, water and land in communities across the country–and regulations are not sufficient to stop the industry from continuing sloppy practices that release toxic substances into the environment, endangering health. Much stronger rules are needed at the state and federal level to reduce the environmental impact of the oil and gas industry and protect communities across America. I hope Colorado’s officials are as outraged as I am, and that we see a dramatic overhaul of regulatory enforcement there.
by Amy Mall