Sept. 11, 2012
Editor, The Denver Post
101 West Colfax Ave., Ste.600
Denver, CO 80202
As a professional print journalist (retired) and as a former member of the Iowa House of Repre-
sentatives, with some understanding of how a person just might, possibly, get the attention of an editor or a governor, I let my Sept. 2 letter to you sit for “cooling”. Today’s published Letter congratulating the Post editorial staff for your thorough research has set me off again. Baloney!
This one gets sent. Because – at least re: fracking - you folks are so negligent in your research as to register as close to incompetent in your charge to inform your readers. Maybe you’re just lazy. Maybe you don’t care. Maybe the increasingly frequent half-page ads from those environmental paragons, the “Oh, Gee” (Oil and Gas) Gals and Guys color your approach.
Whichever…you are failing your professional responsibility to inform your readers. Period.
Your Sept. 2 editorial supporting fracking in Colorado again stated that groundwater contamination due to fracking has not been established. Have you ever cast a simple glance, yet alone a study, toward the COGCC reports of spills? If so, why haven’t you picked up that 43% of surface spills in Colorado have contaminated groundwater?
More so, why haven’t you reported/commented on the confirmed surface water contamina-
tion (same source), given that only 18% of Colorado’s drinking water comes from groundwater?
Did anyone in Editorial read the front page DW section piece on the problem of cleaning up old mining toxins that flow, eventually, into the Dillon Reservoir? Ah….that was then; we know better now. Right? Science eventually will find a way to clean up all the documented radioactive waste and cancer-causing chemicals from fracking residue and emissions. Right?
For that matter, do you all ever look at your business pages? Today’s Post has a piece on the extent of fracking in the U.S. and your reporter cites Colorado as being one of the top two states in the nation for fracking activity. Lifts up Weld County as the premier example.
What about Commerce City? Firestone? Erie? Longmont? Loveland? Ft. Collins? The entire front range which is, not incidentally, a healthy chunk of Colorado’s population and your readership.
Have you ever taken a “Fracking Tour” with the Sierra Club and experienced the burning in your lungs or the tearing in your eyes as you stand in someone’s front yard with a well pad looming next to you? Or sat in a classroom with kids trying to learn over the chunk-a-chunk-a-chunk-a of a drill just beyond your school’s windows?
Have you ever examined the conflict between the State’s “best use” and the Constitution’s Article XX Home Rule provision giving complete authority over to municipal governments? The State is suing Longmont over this provision. Have you considered how citizens feel when they have paid taxes to and testified for their city Planning and Zoning Commission or Long Range Environmental Sustainability Planning or Tourism Bureaus only to have the State (COGCC) come in and tell your City Council, “You can try for anything you want, but we will over-ride you” regarding placement of rigs in backyards or next to hospitals or schools?
I know that I’m old. Old-fashioned. Not current. I’m a throw-back to the times when the press and political leaders had some responsibility to the people. Ahh.. I do thank you for keeping my blood pressure from tanking. And I’m sending this damn letter anyway.
Sue B. Mullins
c/The Honorable John Hickenlooper