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Ohio Utica Shale

Colorado drillers sue Longmont over fracking ban

By Bob Downing Published: December 18, 2012

From the Denver Post:

The Colorado oil and gas industry on Monday hit Longmont with a lawsuit to kill voters' recent ban on fracking within city limits.

The Colorado Oil and Gas Association contends the ban is illegal because it denies mineral owners the right to develop their property and blocks operations that state laws allow.

COGA has asked Weld County district court to invalidate the resolution passed by Longmont voters.

"We recognize and understand that the citizens of Longmont are concerned about the safety of their environment," COGA president Tisha Schuller said in a written statement.

"We hope that the lawsuit can be quickly resolved," Schuller continued, so that industry and the city can cooperate "to address those concerns in a way that does not illegally preclude the safe and responsible development of oil and gas reserves."

Longmont leaders vowed to fight back.

The voters on Nov. 6. changed the city charter to prohibit fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, and the storage of fracking waste in the city. Energy companies frack by blasting millions of gallons of water, sand and chemicals deep underground to loosen oil and gas held in rock.

Colorado residents elsewhere along the Front Range also are pushing to ban oil and gas operations inside municipal limits. Local governments face intensifying pressures as drilling expands close to communities. They've tried to respond to constituents by toughening health and safety regulations that could withstand legal challenges.

However, when Longmont's council passed tougher regulations this year, Gov. John Hickenlooper directed state attorneys to sue the city, challenging local authority.



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Utica and Marcellus shale web sites

Ohio Department of Natural Resources' Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management State agency Web site.

ODNR Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management. State drilling permits. List is updated weekly.

ODNR Division of Geological Survey.

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

Ohio State University Extension.

Ohio Farm Bureau.

Ohio Oil and Gas Association, a Granville-based group that represents 1,500 Ohio energy-related companies.

Ohio Oil & Gas Energy Education Program.

Energy In Depth, a trade group.

Marcellus and Utica Shale Resource Center by Ohio law firm Bricker & Eckler.

Utica Shale, a compilation of Utica shale activities.

Landman Report Card, a site that looks at companies involved in gas and oil leases.FracFocus, a compilation of chemicals used in fracking individual wells as reported voluntarily by some drillers.

Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.

Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.

Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.

National Geographic's The Great Shale Rush.

The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.

Buckeye Forest Council.

Earthjustice, a national eco-group.

Stop Fracking Ohio.

People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.

Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.

No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.

Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.

Penn State Marcellus Center.

Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.

Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.