Thanks to COGCC for improved rules

Recent efforts by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) and the governor’s office have helped shape improved rules for safer and cleaner development of oil and gas in Colorado and now it is time to formally adopt them.

These new rules consider the industry’s impacts on our health and the environment; ensuring that our health and safety are the priority. It was heartening that the COGCC listened to experts and residents across the state, and I was someone, as a geologist, educator and mother, who expressed my concerns that rules are needed to protect our communities and the environment from dangerous, wasteful and polluting practices.

Through these rules, we now have a larger buffer between oil and gas drilling operations and our homes, schools, wetlands, and other sensitive habitat. The industry also now has limits on wasteful flaring and leakages, which are outdated practices that not only contribute to greenhouse gas emissions but also waste a non-renewable natural resource.

These rules will make Colorado a leader in responsible oil and gas development and help us reduce the impacts of this industry on our state. It is this kind of collaboratively determined rules that are needed to protect our water, air, soil and open spaces for wildlife and current and future generations. Kudos to the COGCC and Gov. Jared Polis for listening to our communities and experts so that Colorado can continue to be a thriving, clean and healthy place to live; now is the time to formally adopt these rules.

LAURIE BRANDT

Montrose

Watch Democrats take credit for coronavirus vaccine

I enjoyed the recent letters from Gary Reeder and Richard Hopkins.

I have made several calls to Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. They have never returned any of my calls. All I wanted to know is why they wanted to impeach Trump right away instead of trying to work with him. Is it because he’s not a dirty lifelong politician like they are?

Yes Trump is arrogant, but who cares? Look at what he did for the economy!

The news media and Democrats had made up their minds to cause a lot of the hate that has happened in this country.

Watch and the Democrats will take credit for the virus vaccine. Trump was saying all along that a vaccine was close and would maybe be available by the end of the year. Guess what is happening.

I pray the truth comes out.

GINGER BARNES

Grand Junction

Our new senator will help build a clean energy economy

Congratulations to Senator-elect John Hickenlooper for his recent win to represent Colorado in the U.S. Senate. As a geologist, he understands the science and the urgency to transition to a 100% renewable energy economy with net-zero emissions by 2050.

I am thrilled he supports a job-creating plan that includes: government-funded climate technology research, reinventing America’s transportation system, increased energy efficiency, and job training for people transitioning out of the fossil fuel industry into green jobs. These plans can make America a global leader in climate technology.

As an experienced politician, Hickenlooper understands that ambitious transitions are expedited by smart policy. By implementing a carbon dividend plan we can promote U.S. economic growth. It is a critical component that provides necessary market incentives to quickly lower carbon emissions without using government regulation. Revenue generated from a price on carbon would be returned directly to American taxpayers as a dividend, more than offsetting any potential increase in energy costs.

With Hickenlooper’s leadership may 2021 begin an accelerated path toward a clean energy economy for all.

SUSAN ATKINSON

Durango

Wear a mask to keep hospitals from being overwhelmed

In response to Mr. Marvel, “bending the curve” is not delaying the inevitable! We can PREVENT deaths — and often, COVI-D19’s extraordinary, awful, after-effects — by wearing a mask and keeping our social distance. Just for a while, everybody, not forever!

Mesa County does not sit in a bubble, immune somehow, to the spread of this virus. I know this from personal experience of friends and loved ones. Yes, it’s here!

We need to do what we can now to prevent our hospitals and caregivers from being overwhelmed like they are in other more rural areas of the country and our state.

No one would run headlong into traffic because it’s inevitable you’ll be hit by a car.

Wear a mask to prevent the spread to others, and yourself.

MICHELE BURNS

Grand Junction

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