Printed letters, Dec. 4, 2011

I would like to thank Congressman Doug Lamborn for his work to speed up oil shale production in western Colorado. The overwhelming majority of our transportation fuels — 94 percent — come from petroleum. Oil shale can be utilized as a high-quality synthetic fuel refined into jet fuel, diesel and gasoline.

When you look at the fact that most of the food on our table travels more than 1,500 miles before it reaches our plate, the need for quality, homegrown energy becomes paramount. It is unfathomable that the administration wants to delay oil shale development and wrap it up in yet more red tape.

As Lamborn said in a press release, the Obama administration is trying to keep “jobs and American energy security under lock and key.”

America uses more oil than any other country in the world and renewable energy alone will not quell our insatiable need. The United States has 6 percent of the world’s population, yet consumes a quarter of the world’s oil. More than 75 percent of our oil comes from foreign regimes and we send three-quarters of a trillion dollars oversees per year buying oil.

Sound investments in oil shale mean the money spent oversees for energy could be utilized at home producing oil, creating thousands of well-paying jobs, generating huge revenue distribution while significantly strengthening our national energy security.



Water is more important than oil shale development

In The Daily Sentinel’s Nov. 21 editorial, it stated that “…Washington pols should stop trying to convince the public that commercial oil shale production is going to occur any time soon.”

I just had to write in and share that a few weeks ago our congressman, Scott Tipton, met with constituents from the agricultural industry. As one of those participants, I only wish Rep. Doug Lamborn from Colorado Springs had also been present to hear our conversation about oil shale and water. Had he been there, perhaps Lamborn might have reconsidered his PIONEERS Act, which seeks to kick start, via discounted royalty rates and speculative leasing of public lands, an industry that has yet to develop a commercially viable technology.

Lamborn doesn’t seem to worry about an industry whose own estimates of its water demands (200,000 acre feet annually) total 8.5 times the amount of water (24,000 acre feet) used for all municipal and industrial purposes in Routt, Moffat, Rio Blanco and Garfield counties in 2008. That figure, from Colorado’s State Water Supply Initiative, doesn’t include the water used by agriculture in those four counties, whose streams are targeted for oil shale development. Nor does it include the reality that water demands for these counties are predicted to nearly triple by 2050.

I can only hope that Congressman Tipton will relay this information to his counterpart on the Front Range. He could also point out that an oil shale industry that exercises its existing senior rights over here may threaten junior rights that divert West Slope water to homes in his own district.

Tipton should also ask Lamborn and House Speaker John Boehner to consider the loss of real jobs in agriculture and outdoor recreation as they tout oil shale jobs that have, for more than a century, proven elusive.



Dodd and Frank finally made sound decisions

A few months ago we heard the welcome news that Sen. Chris Dodd would not run again for the U.S. Senate. Even more welcome news is Barney Frank’s recent decision not to seek re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives.

The economic problems facing our nation today can be blamed on the team of Dodd-Frank who, before the housing bubble broke, insisted on policies that allowed people to buy houses they could not afford. Now we taxpayers are footing the bill to prop up Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac.

Hopefully, the states that sent these two irresponsible individuals to Congress have gained knowledge from this terrible mistake and will select representatives who support legislation to correct earlier bad decisions.



Redistricting chairman shows he favors Democrats

I am deeply concerned that a man who considers himself “independent” and “unaffiliated” would so blatantly completely side with Democrats, putting one Republican against another.

When reapportionment was done in the past, it was decided that communities should remain “whole.” The latest approved map has left communities divided and confusing.

Mario Carrera, the chairman of the Colorado Reapportionment Commission, has given over $9,000 to Democratic candidates in recent years. Unaffiliated? I think not.

This new map is anti-woman, to say the very least. It puts women in Republican leadership positions into the same districts, which obviously dilutes their influence in Colorado’s political process.

It is apparent that the Democrats do not represent the best interest of women, as they would suggest.

I hope the Supreme Court will overturn this map so the districts are drawn fairly.




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