Hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, is a hot topic in Colorado as companies seek drilling permits around the state, and the public is concerned with its longterm effects.
Fracking is a gas drilling process that blasts chemical-laden water deep into the ground. Supporters say the process is safe, while opponents say the technique pollutes groundwater and the chemicals are unsafe.
The Sustainable Film Series - a project of the Eagle Valley Alliance for Sustainability - continues at Loaded Joe's in Avon Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. with the controversial film "Gasland." Nominated for a Best Documentary Academy Award, "Gasland" was born when New York-based director Josh Fox was asked to lease his land in northeastern Pennsylvania for natural gas drilling. He set out on a journey that took him across 32 states, where he met other rural residents on the front lines of fracking. Along the way he discovered toxic streams, ruined aquifers, dying livestock, brutal illnesses and kitchen sinks that burst into flame, all of which "Gasland" points to as the result of fracking.
Today, Boulder County Commissioner Elise Jones is scheduled to debate Gov. John Hickenlooper on the impact of natural gas drilling and the chemicals used in the process. According to the Boulder Daily Camera, the debate will cover issues like public health concerns, the environmental impact and local economic considerations. Colorado residents chafing at the rapidly expanding oil and gas operations along the Front Range are pressuring their local governments for protection from industrial light, noise, vibration and pollution within city limits.
But state officials insist they alone have the right to regulate how and where the industry does its drilling. State attorneys are fighting local governments that try to impose their own rules.
Fracking: Good or bad? You decide.