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Nearly a month after a hydrocarbon plume was discovered near a gas plant owned by the company Williams Midstream about four miles north of the town of Parachute, it's source has not been identified. The plume continues leaking toxic compounds like the carcinogen benzene into groundwater near Parachute Creek.
At a public forum Thursday night Williams officials revealed that there was another leak a few months ago at the same spot thought to be the source of the current plume. That leak was apparently not reported to state officials.
KDNK's Nelson Harvey reports on that news, and the public's response.
Last month, the Bureau of Land Management announced plans for a new environmental review of natural gas exploration on public lands on the Roan Plateau, northwest of Rifle. In June, a District Court judge ruled that the agency's previous analysis did not adequately address cumulative air quality impacts, ozone impacts, and a citizen's alternative to the BLM's plan. The ruling came out of a lawsuit filed in 2008 by conservation groups represented by Earth Justice.
Michael Freeman is an attorney with Earth Justice and spoke with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about what to expect from this next analysis and why the Roan Plateau is worth protecting.
The entire interview with Michael Freeman and Will Roush of Carbondale's Wilderness Workshop about natural gas drilling on the Roan Plateau and an update on the Thompson Divide is available in our news archives.
Garfield County commissioners voted Monday to contribute $5,000 of the county's discretionary fund to an energy symposium in Grand Junction. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
Investigation continues into the source of a spill of liquid hydrocarbons near Parachute Creek, but Williams officials now believe the source to be a failed pressure guage on a pipeline owned by Williams Partners.
Several monitoring wells around the creek have shown benzene levels greatly exceeding the EPA standards for drinking water.
KDNK News has provided ongoing coverage of the spill, which you can listen to in our news archives.
Governor Hickenlooper made a visit to Glenwood Springs today to commemorate the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority's new natural gas bus system. KDNK's Ed Williams was there and filed this report.
The Bureau of Land Management is auctioning off close to 100 leases for natural gas drilling in Colorado today but 20 parcels in and around Paonia, Crawford, and Hotchkiss won't be among them. Citizens who have taken a stand against gas drilling in the North Fork Valley are happy but the specter of natural gas exploration in the area still looms. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
And click through to hear the full interview with author Eugenia Bone, who went to Washington DC in January to talk with legislators and BLM officials about gas drilling in the North Fork Valley.
Several Carbondale residents were among a small crowd that gathered in Rifle Thursday night for Garfield County's Energy Advisory Board meeting. KDNK's Marilyn Gleason was there and has this report.
In December, the Bureau of Land Management approved an expansion of the West Elk Coal Mine, southeast of Somerset, Colorado, which could impact a nearby roadless area. Environmentalists may take action against the decision, but government agencies say the expansion is not yet set in stone. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more about the complicated, multi-level approval process.
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.