DENVER – Gov. John Hickenlooper said his administration should have spoken with environmental groups before running a radio ad that defends hydraulic fracturing.
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Hickenlooper told FOX31 Denver in an interview that he meant to celebrate a new rule that forces companies to disclose more chemicals used during hydraulic fracturing. The process involves using chemicals, water and sand to break apart rock to release natural gas.
“What we should have done is reached out to the environmental community and asked if they were okay with the language,” Hickenlooper told Fox 31.
He declined, however, to retract his statement in the ad.
Hickenlooper’s remarks follow comments he made in a Colorado Oil & Gas Association radio ad where he says the state has “not had one instance of groundwater contamination associated with drilling and hydraulic fracturing” since the overhaul of the state’s oil and gas protections in 2008.
Contending that oil and gas development has led to multiple cases of groundwater contamination, environmental groups called for Hickenlooper to pull the ad.
Tisha Schuller, president of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association, has said neither drilling nor hydraulic fracturing has affected groundwater since the 2008 rules went into effect.