Next week, the Garfield County Commissioners will make a final decision on three special use permits to drill 53 natural gas wells on two pads and build a pipeline within Battlement Mesa. This is the last step in the local land use process before the permits proceed to the State Oil and Gas Commission.
For the past six years, Battlement Mesa residents have been working to protect their community from the impacts of large scale oil and gas development Now they are asking for your support as they stand before the Commissioner’s and demand a decision that will best protect the property values, heath, and quality of life of Battlement Mesa residents.
Join us at one of two Board of County Commissioners hearings on the permits:
- Wednesday, December 15th starting at 9 a.m. in the Grand Valley Recreation Center, 398 Arroyo Drive, Parachute
- Thursday, December 16th starting at 9 a.m. in the Garfield County Administration Building, 108 8th St, Glenwood Springs
It is unclear how long each meeting will last as it depends on how many people show up to speak. To make it as easy to speak as possible, we are creating a sign up list that we will deliver to the Commissioners the day of the hearings.
Sign up here if you know you can attend and want to speak. That way we can get you in and out as soon as possible.
If you cannot attend the meeting, please show your support and call the Commissioners and ask them to protect the people of Battlement Mesa:
- District 1: Tom Jankovsky, 970-384-5914, click here to send an email.
- District 2: John Martin: 970-945-5914 ex. 1010, click here to send an email.
- District 3: Mike Samson: 970-384-3663, click here to send an email.
Grand Valley Citizen’s Alliance and Battlement Concerned Citizens are asking Garfield County the following:
- Large scale industrial activity does not belong in neighborhoods. Even the best mitigations in the world cannot mitigate a bad location and we strongly believe these pads to be too close to people.
- To truly protect the people of Battlement Mesa, the Commissioners should deny the permits and ask the operator to access the minerals from outside the community.
- If the permits are going to be approved, all 30 conditions of approval must be applied.
- In fact, we believe Garfield County should add the following to the conditions of approval:
- Ursa must produce an emergency response plan that sets out procedures for notification, evacuation, and shelter in place for all residents and occupied buildings within ¼ mile of the facility.
- Specific plans shall be created for higher occupancy buildings such as schools, assisted living facilities, and the recreation center.
- Noise violations must be measured from the nearest building and recorded.
- In case of an inspection, Garfield County Inspectors must be granted access to Ursa’s operations as soon as safety permits.
- Ursa must work with Battlement Mesa residents and the county to develop a comprehensive drilling plan for the project.
- In addition current conditions about air quality, Ursa must employ technology that controls volatile organic compounds with at least 95% efficiency.
- All facilities onsite shall be subjected to an instrument-based leak detection and repair (LDAR) inspection at least once a year.
- If a leak of over 10,000 ppm hydrocarbons is discovered the first attempt to repair the leak shall be made no later than 24 hours after discovery.
- Air quality monitoring results must be available to the public and summarized in the quarterly reports to the County Commissioners.
To be clear, there is no question that large scale industrial operations do not belong next to people’s homes and the Commissioners do have the power to deny these permits. If they do not deny the permit, these permits must only be approved if they are creating the safest oil & gas pads in the state of Colorado.
Please help us achieve this goal. If drilling can happen in Battlement Mesa, it can happen anywhere in Garfield County. It is time to show our elected officials that the people of Garfield County do not support drilling in residential areas.