NewsElection Watch


Ballot question wants to change setbacks for oil and gas

Posted at 6:46 PM, Sep 17, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-17 22:28:11-04

COLORADO – Proposition 112 will appear on your ballot this fall, and depending on how you vote, it could mean a big change for the oil and gas industry.

Here’s what the question will say:

 Shall there be a change to the Colorado Revised Statutes concerning a statewide minimum distance requirement for new oil and gas development, and, in connection therewith, changing existing distance requirements to require that any new oil and gas development be located at least 2,500 feet from any occupied structure and any area designated for additional protection and authorizing the state or a local government to increase the minimum distance requirement?

What it’s asking is if the setbacks should be increased from the current standards of 500 feet for neighborhoods and 1,000 for schools and hospitals.

Colorado Rising, the organization behind the ballot initiative, says it’s needed primarily for health concerns.

‘The most negative health impacts happen within 2,500 feet of oil and gas development, things like low birth weight, increased cancer, respiratory disorders,’ said Anne Lee Foster, a volunteer organizer with Colorado Rising.

Foster citing a Colorado School of Public Health Study of those health impacts.

‘I think our biggest concern is the health impacts, the exposure to toxic benzene, the explosions,’ said Foster.

Opponents say the proposition will create a huge blow to Colorado’s economy.

‘There’s a number of different sectors in the economy from restaurants to hotels to real estate to truck drivers, all different types of sectors that rely on the industry for their jobs,’ said Karen Crummy, spokesperson for Protect Colorado.

Crummy added that nearly 150,000 jobs are at risk over the next decade if the ballot question passes.