Mandatory recount of fracking ban vote taking place in Broomfield

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BROOMFIELD, Colo. -- A ban on fracking in Broomfield was passed in this month’s off-year elections, much to the surprise of many voters.

The decision to stop fracking for five years was a very close one – almost too close to call, passing by a mere 17 votes, according to a provisional count that was completed on Thursday night. That’s why a mandatory recount was taking place Friday morning.

To say this fracking is a heated issue may be an understatement.

Fracking is a hydraulic process that involves the usage of pressurized chemicals to fracture rock in order to get oil and gas. A grassroots group concerned about the environmental impact of fracking got enough signatures to put a measure that would ban the practice in Broomfield for five years on November's ballot.

The ban fell short on Election Day by 13 votes, but came out ahead by 17 after the provisional votes were counted Thursday night.

At a fracking forum earlier in November, Governor John Hickenlooper urged Coloradans to become more informed on an energy issue that seemingly becomes more volatile by the day.

“I believe that the primary reason that people have strong reactions against fracking – and some other processes – is due to a lack of correct information,” Hickenlooper said.

Others, like Joan Stern-Murahata, who says she's part of a group of grandmothers against fracking, vehemently disagree with Hickenlooper.

“The reason we moved to Colorado is for the clean air and water,” Murahata said. “I feel like endangering the health of our grandchildren by contaminating their water is unacceptable.”

Those who want fracking to continue in places like Broomfield say that although defeated, the fact that the race was so tight shows their thoughts about fracking's environmental safety have plenty of support.

“In a very tight race, Broomfield voters demonstrated that they’re concerned about extreme energy bans,” said Tisha Schuller, President and CEO of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association.

Other cities like Boulder, Fort Collins and Lafayette have stood firm against fracking. Some experts say we could see a vote on a statewide ban on fracking in 2014.



  • Krisann

    If you ban fracking, then I say no more tax revenues for your county off of fossil fuels and if the whole state bans it then good luck with raising funds for your state programs, no fracking means no new drilling or exploration. I could get meaner but I will be civil get educated on this subject and quit being stupid.

  • Rachel

    It’s all fine and good till your tap water catch’s fire.So what’s the big deal,just drill without fracking.Duhh

  • Fast45

    When any fracking company has an accidental spill above ground, EPA banned toxins such as benzenes are released … yet these same companies want us to believe what they are pumping underground is “environmentally safe.” Why not come clean and tell us what they’re using? Because it’s very bad stuff … that’s why.

  • Andrea B. Lucero

    But Fracking takes place very very VERY far below the water table so it really does not pose too much of a threat unless the company doing the drilling cuts corners when cementing the casings of the holes. Most often, if your water is contaminated, its because the company(ies) who are drilling WATER WELLS are NOT doing it correctly…common sense. Although, I do agree that the fracking companies need to be more transparent of the actual (supposedly safe) chemicals that they are using for the fracturing…but again…this all takes please so far beneath the water table, it shouldn’t pose much a threat…unless the casing that runs through the water table on the way back up to the surface breaks.

  • Fast45

    Why would it ever be acceptable, to pump poisons into the ground, even far below the surface? The only reasons that Haliburton and it’s subsidiaries won’t divulge the content of their hydrostatic fluids, is because then everyone would agree that fracking is hideous. They SAY it’s because others might use their formulations … but that would imply they haven’t heard of patents. Anybody with a good knowledge of solubility of petroleum knows they’re using benzenes and other poisons.

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