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“Coloradans Against Fracking” Urges Statewide Ban on the Dangerous Gas and Oil Extraction Method

February 24, 2015
Jeremy Nichols (303) 437-7663
In This Release
Climate + Energy

Tuesday, February 24, 2015
“Coloradans Against Fracking” Urges Statewide Ban on the Dangerous Gas and Oil Extraction Method

WildEarth Guardians Joins Launch of Broad-based Coalition
Contact: Jeremy Nichols (303) 437-7663

Additional Contact:

Sam Schabacker, Food & Water Watch, sschabacker@fwwatch.org; 720-295-1036

Denver, CO – WildEarth Guardians joined residents fromacross the state in Denver today to announce the launch of Coloradans AgainstFracking, a broad-based coalition highlighting the failure of Governor JohnHickenloooper’s oil and gas task force to produce legislative recommendationsthat will protect Coloradans from this dangerous gas and oil extraction process,and calling on the Governor to use his executive authority to issue a statewideban on fracking.

“We’re honored to join this coalition in calling on Coloradoto lead the charge away from fossil fuels and toward clean energy,” said JeremyNichols, WildEarth Guardians’ Climate and Energy Program Director. “Fracking is exactly a terrible toll on ourcommunities, our clean air, and our climate; it’s time to draw the linestatewide.”

“Clearscientific evidence demonstrates that fracking is inherently harmful to publichealth, property values and the environment,” says Karen Dike of Our Longmont.“As a retired Registered Nurse, I find the health science particularly damning:fracking uses carcinogenic chemicals and allows known toxins like benzene topollute our land, air and water. There’s no place for fracking in a healthyColorado.”

In fact, ascientific analysis of more than 400 peer-reviewed studies of the healthimpacts associated with fracking in December compelled New York Governor AndrewCuomo to ban fracking in that state.

“GovernorJohn Hickenlooper has refused to protect the people of this state from thehealth, environmental and property impacts of fracking,” says Mike Roque, Colorado Progressive Coalition. “He has failed Coloradans by appointingan oil and gas task force with no public health representatives and norepresentatives from communities of color concerned about fracking. GovernorHickenlooper has the power to ban fracking; it’s time for him to do it.”

Roque and Dike were among those who spoke ata press conference outside the Colorado Convention Center as the oil and gastask force held its final meeting inside. Coloradans Against Fracking expects the task force to finalize recommendationsthat ignore the clear and mounting science against fracking, and insteadcontinue to green light the extreme extraction process next to homes, schools,public parks and pristine areas throughout Colorado.

“If GovernorCuomo can ban fracking in New York, Governor Hickenlooper can do it inColorado,” says Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, Earth Guardians.As a young person, I hope GovernorHickenlooper will stand up to the oil and gas companies to keep Colorado’swater and air clean and healthy for my generation and many more to come.”

After the press conference, about forty members of theColoradans Against Fracking coalition entered the convention center and deliveredcopies of the New York health compendium to members of the oil and gas taskforce.

“There’s no question that fracking is harming people inColorado right now,” said Rev. Robert Toll. “After having lived inParachute for two years as a pastor of a church there, I became aware of theresidents there coming down with various forms of cancer (including myself withprostate cancer) and various respiratory problems. We lived in closeproximity to thousands of fracking sites next to our homes, schools, library,golf course, and the Colorado River. Housing prices have been adverselyaffected by all of this fracking activity.”

People incommunities across Colorado have for years experienced the negative effects offracking, including increased risk of cancer and birth defects, loweredproperty values, water and air contamination, and diminished quality of life. Inaddition, fracking takes place next to homes and schools where lower-incomefamilies, often people of color, live.

“Families all across Colorado are being forced to suffer thenegative impacts of fracking on their lives,” said Razz Gormley with Frack FreeColorado. “This is not just an environmental issue – this is about our electedofficials choosing to serve corporate interests over our basic Human Rights.”

“Fracking is notpatriotic, economically viable or socially responsible. It is dangerouslyirrational – mining a product at the cost of everything,” said questions SharonCarlisle with Protect Our Loveland. “Yet our elected representatives and our courts continue to favor thisdangerous, industrial process over the people. Why?”

“Fracking operations are no longer quaint, singleold-fashioned wells,” saidTricia Olson with Boulder County Citizens forCommunity Rights. “These are large industrial operations, producing serious airpollution and health effects, and scheduled to pop up everywhere throughout thestate. Bureaucrats talk about mitigating the effects. Mitigate? Let’s eliminate! Let’s protect our beautiful state and use its abundantsun and wind for renewable energy and sustainable jobs.”

“As the top public servant in this state, the Governor isaccountable to Coloradans, not oil and gas corporations,” said Sam Schabacker,Western Region Director with Food & Water Watch. “It is GovernorHickenlooper’s job to put our health, our environment and our future above theprofits of his Big Oil & Gas donors; therefore, it is his job to banfracking in Colorado once and for all.”

AboutColoradans Against Fracking:

ColoradansAgainst Fracking is a broad-based coalition of organizations, businesses andindividuals from all corners of Colorado calling on Governor Hickenlooper toheed the science, listen to Coloradans and follow Governor Cuomo’s example bybanning fracking in the Mile High State.

These individuals, groups and businesses have joined ColoradansAgainst Fracking:

Our Longmont, Foodshed Productions, Our Broomfield, 350Colorado, Boulder County Citizens for Community Rights, Frack Free Colorado,Protect Our Loveland, Food & Water Watch, Eco-Justice Ministries, ColoradoProgressive Coalition, Earth Guardians, Frack Free Boulder, CFORSE, KidsAgainst Fracking, Lakewood Fractivists, Greenpeace, Valley Organic GrowersAssociation, CREDO, Question Fracking, Environmental Action, WildEarthGuardians, Friends of the Earth, Breast Cancer Action, People Demanding Action,Progressive Democrats of America, Question Alliance, Women’s InternationalLeague for Peace and Freedom – Greeley Branch, Center for Biological Diversity,MindDrive Legal Services, Clean Energy Action, 350 Central Colorado, 350Colorado Springs, 350 Denver, 350 Fort Collins, 350 S. Metro Denver, 350 WeldCounty, Garfield Transparency Initiative, Northwest Colorado Progressives, BlueWing Strategies LLC, What the Frack!? Araphaoe

Other Contact
Sam Schabacker, Food & Water Watch, sschabacker@fwwatch.org; 720-295-1036
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