Speak up for our future | AspenTimes.com

Speak up for our future

Dear Editor:

Today, May 3, from 1-4 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. in the main auditorium at CMC in Rifle, the BLM hosts public hearings on the future of oil shale development in Colorado, Wyoming and Utah. Comments from the public are needed and will be used to help chart the agency’s direction as it considers development on 2 million acres that the Bush administration slated for possible oil shale leasing in 2008.

Oil shale is very different from the gas development currently happening on the Western Slope. It creates 100 percent surface disturbance of the area and requires enormous amounts of water and electricity.

The BLM predicts that large scale-development of oil shale alone could require up to 378,000 acre feet of water per year. This is 50 percent more water than the Denver metro area uses annually.

The BLM estimates that electricity needed to produce 1 million barrels per day would require ten new coal-fired power plants, each with a capacity to power a city of 500,000 people.

Production of oil shale emits 23 percent to 73 percent more greenhouse gases than conventional liquid fuels from crude oil.

Let’s turn out in force and make sure the BLM considers these enormous impacts before we sacrifice millions of acres to development of another dirty fossil fuel. Our comments are important as the BLM takes its fresh look at oil shale development. Show up a little early for more information or help with talking points. This is our chance to take a stand and defend a livable future for Colorado!

Michael Gorman

Glenwood Springs

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