To the editor:
The first thing that voters need to know about Proposition 112 is that it is a ban — plain and simple.
The results in Weld County alone make the ban clear. You see, nearly 90 percent of the state’s oil is harvested right in Weld. Weld is also No. 1 in agricultural production in Colorado with ditches, ponds, rivers and lakes everywhere. With over 300,000 people spread out across the county and a 112 ban on drilling within 2,500 feet of a structure or a waterway, nearly 90 percent of Weld’s land becomes undrillable.
The unintended, or intended, consequences continue. The Denver Metro skyline is 1/3 full of oil and gas companies. Indeed, a full third of office space downtown is oil and gas oriented. If they leave, downtown becomes a ghost town with tumbling values, including homes and condos. Can anyone say recession in Colorado?
The Western slope will be off limits for future drilling, killing their dynamic natural gas fields.
Governments throughout Colorado will have to learn to get along with a lot less tax revenue — and help for the disasters like the 2013 flood.
Job losses will be rampant and out migration will drive down property values.
That’s not a future that bodes well for Colorado. Vote no on 112.
Bill Jerke is a Colorado native and farmer who served in the legislature and as a Weld commissioner. He is the executive director of FUEL, a 501c-4 supporting natural resources and their beneficial uses.