3-part oil-gas forum planned in Greeley

GREELEY – The first in a series of free public forums on issues surrounding oil and gas drilling in Northern Colorado – including the controversial topic of hydraulic fracturing – will be held Monday on the University of Northern Colorado campus.

Called “FrackingSense Greeley: What We Know, What We Don’t Know, and What We Hope to Learn about Oil and Gas Development,” the series is organized by the University of Colorado-Boulder’s Center for the American West in conjunction with the AirWaterGas Sustainability Research Network funded by the National Science Foundation, and with support and participation from the city of Greeley, KUNC-FM 91.5, Mineral Resources Inc., Synergy Resources, the Greeley Tribune, UNC and Weld Air & Water.

Monday’s session, “Drilling Practices and an Overview of the Issues,” will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. in the Longs Peak Room of UNC’s University Center. Panelists will include Patty Limerick, Center for the American West faculty director; Will Fleckenstein, interim department head and BP adjunct professor of petroleum engineering at Colorado School of Mines in Golden; and Joe Ryan, professor and Bennett-Lindstedt Faculty Fellow in the Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering Department at CU-Boulder. After the session, those attending are invited to an informal discussion at Kress Cinema and Lounge, 817 Eighth Ave., Greeley.

The second session, “Risk Assessment and Modern Life, with Air Quality Emphasis,” will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. April 28 at Billie Martinez Elementary School, 341 14th Ave. in Greeley. Panelists will be Limerick; John Adgate, environmental and occupational health chair at the Colorado School of Public Health; Jim Martin, senior counsel at Beatty & Wozniak P.C. and former Region 8 administrator for the federal Environmental Protection Agency; and Garry Kaufman, deputy director of the air pollution control division of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

The final session, “The Regulatory Environment for Oil and Gas,” will be held from 6:30 to 9 p.m. May 12 at Northridge High School, 7001 Grizzly Drive, Greeley. Panel participants will be Limerick; Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission director Matt Lepore; Mike Paules, senior staff regulatory adviser at WPX Energy; Gunnison County Attorney David Baumgarten; and Gary Graham of Western Resource Advocates.

Although the project is funded by the National Science Foundation, it is not responsible for any statements made by speakers in the program.

For more information, contact Limerick at 303-492-4879 or patricia.limerick@colorado.edu, or Brad Mueller, director of community development for the city of Greeley, at 970-350-9786 or Brad.Mueller@greeleygov.com.

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