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Safeguards needed

Dear Editor:I read an article in The Aspen Times this morning concerning the incompetence of the gas drilling in the Silt area (“Gas firm fined $371,200,” 8/18). The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has recommended a financial penalty as the response to this ineptitude. I think this is just but not an answer to a much more serious problem that could and maybe already is occurring: Should the drilling be allowed in the old nuclear blast site of Rulison?I do not see any guarantee that the radioactive air that is contained underground, as a result of this blast, would remain below the surface with drilling in this area. Before future drilling is allowed, I think it is imperative that tests be run and the communities of this valley and the Silt, Rifle and New Castle areas be educated and informed about the consequences. This is a very serious health issue. Our weather patterns often come from the west. The wind could carry this radioactive air up our valley. It is an unseen danger. Each hole that is drilled should require not only the monitoring of water and soil quality, but air quality as well.Air contamination effects us all. All the financial penalties imposed will not replace the sadness of lives lost to cancer.Judy HaasAspen


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