COGCC disappoints with childish bias

I was disappointed to read about the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission’s internal failings in Thursday’s paper, although I do appreciate Dennis Webb bringing them to light.

As an employee working in the oil and gas sector of Colorado, it was disheartening to hear that the organization we work with to conduct business and to improve the cleanliness and migration of that business to a more sustainable format sees us in such a negative light. It does great damage to any trust or rapport that might exist between the two entities. It’s been a frustrating year for all of us and especially so within this industry with the seemingly two-faced efforts of Jared Polis and the COGCC.

Earlier this year we were told by Polis that his administration intended to let off the throttle so to speak with regard to his “oil and gas wars.” Shortly after, the COGCC pushed through the 2,000-foot setback rule (which, I might add, is a one-way setback, meaning it doesn’t apply to developers who want to build right next to a well — which contributed to the tragedy in Firestone). Polis’ sent our industry one message and then seemingly orchestrated the COGCC to send a different one entirely.

Pretty underhanded if you ask me.

There’s no question that things have to change. Global warming coupled with our apparent inability as a species to self regulate our own population demands that change. The issue at the core of it all is how we go about it? The unfortunate truth of oil is that the synthetic alternative for plastics production is expensive and nowhere near ready for the mainstream. With natural gas how do we rip out all of the heating infrastructure in 90% and migrate to electric? With regard to electric, what is Polis’s long-term plan to improve the multi-state electric grid enough to not only support such a change by plan for future development? How is the COGCC and the state working with the industry to plan for migration? How are they coordinating our industry and the electric utilities for this transition and planning for the long haul?

By mocking and undermining us.

I doubt Ms. Hornback’s Lorax would call that kindness or taking care of one another, now would he.

A sustainable path forward must be achieved if we are to salvage any hope of normalcy for our children and those that follow them. It’s unfortunate that we’ve apparently tasked children to lead us.

TRAVIS HARLESS

Collbran

Why don’t more state have elections like Colorado?

November’s election has come and gone in Colorado. Though certification is pending, the race for most major candidates has been called. Those who lost have conceded and congratulated the winners.

As voters mailed in their ballots or dropped them off in ballot boxes starting Oct. 19, Colorado election officials began processing them (not so in Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania). Ballot boxes were distributed in multiple locations throughout our counties (not so in Texas). This system has been built over decades under both Republican and Democratic administrations. With it, Coloradans have elected Gardner, Bennet, Hickenlooper, and Boebert. We passed a paid medical leave program at the same time we reduced the state income tax.

What would elections look like if all U.S. citizens voted like Coloradans? Had officials in Georgia and Michigan began counting ballots earlier, the story of this election would have been flipped on its head: Biden would have been up at the start (more Democrats voted by mail) and Trump would have closed the gap over Election Day with in-person voting (more Republicans voted in person). Regardless, the result would have been the same.

Why do others not vote like Coloradans? Because Republican-controlled state legislatures have made it so, largely under the guise of combating the red herring that is voter fraud. If Republican lawmakers and their supporters truly believe in a “marketplace of ideas” in which the politicians that support the best, most popular policies are elected into office, then they too would support a voting system like Colorado’s.

JOEL SHOLTES

Grand Junction

Election was secure, so let’s move on to smooth transition

The main editorial in the Daily Sentinel of Nov. 17 said that this past election was one of the most secure and best run in recent times. This has been shown in lots of ways and mentioned by a lot of people. We need to accept this most basic aspect of our democratic processes, the vote of the people, and move to another basic democratic process, a smooth and orderly transition to a new administration. The sooner we can do this, the better because we have a lot of urgent problems ahead of us that have to be dealt with.

DUANE CARR

Grand Junction

Compromise is the beating heart of our democracy

This is some post-election thoughts about future possibilities.

With Republicans, Democrats and unaffiliated voters split largely by thirds in Colorado, how about primary ballots on one ballot instead of by party? I spent most of my voting life as unaffiliated having to choose one party over the other in the primary. There were times I chose only one candidate on a party ballot and left the rest blank. A combined single ballot could be less costly giving parties a view of the varied preferences of the voters. Clearly many voters don’t like either party’s agendas.

It became obvious when Joe Biden won the Democratic primary that the general preference was moderation. I preferred a younger moderate but with the radical right driving the left to a more radical opposition, moderation is the choice. The general public does not want either fascism or socialism. They want a government that works on consensus. Compromise is the beating heart of our democracy. Any party that strives for a “permanent majority” is tyrannical. Smaller majorities elected variably by the public are more or less forced to compromise. The public does not want a ruler. Think commonwealth, which is where we began in Jamestown, Virginia, in 1607.

Another thought, but just as political and important. Our water issues. California dominates Colorado River shares. Could we form a compact of Western states to help California build a desalination plant dedicated to crop irrigation? Maybe it could be possible to combine it with a wave power generation plant. One of the problems with the large reservoirs in the Southwest is the rate of evaporation. Maybe a desalination plant could even help with that.

Meanwhile, is anyone curious about the number of votes Colorado tabulated for the ridicules 17 other presidential candidates?

EILEEN O’TOOLE

Grand Junction

Scientists, not politicians, deserve credit for vaccine

To the writer who suggested that the Democrats would take credit for the COVID-19 vaccine, I have not seen any evidence of that, nor would I support them doing so. However, I also do not agree that Trump should be congratulated, inasmuch as he has done nothing but make ridiculous pronouncements, promises and predictions regarding the virus — including his recent statement that “if you get it, you’ll get over it.”

The only people who deserve credit for a vaccine are the scientists — and it seems that Trump doesn’t put much stock in science. His shabby treatment of Dr. Fauci is unforgivable.

CLAIRE DENZLER

Grand Junction

No president is ever solely responsible for the economy

As I read the letters of support for Trump, the one thing that stands out is the belief that he did so much for our economy. That is not completely accurate as each new administration inherits the pros and cons of the previous administration.

For example, when Obama took office in January 2009, he inherited the Bush administrations issues, such as troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and a struggling economy. Eight years later when Trump took office, January 2017, he inherited Obama’s administration, which included troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, Obamacare and a thriving economy. As we look to the next administration, Biden will inherit troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, a global pandemic, strained relations with foreign leaders and a struggling economy.

So before you give credit and support to the current sitting president for the three years of economic prosperity during his term, please know and understand our history and how it affects present and future administrations.

SANDY HIGGINS

Grand Junction

Listen to medical professionals and help slow virus’ spread

In light of the new surge of cases in Mesa County and how it is being ignored, I feel the need to write about the current COVID-19 situation.

I went to City Market in Fruita on Sunday and was totally surprised and concerned with the number of people who were not wearing masks and the number of people ignoring the one-way aisle signs. These are some of the reasons why Mesa’s numbers are skyrocketing. I know there are many people who say that they would rather take the chance and live their lives as if nothing was wrong, but there are also many of us who don’t want to die or even to spend weeks or months on a ventilator alone in a hospital, not being able to have contact with our families. And then if we do survive and get out of the hospital, living with the residual horrifying, debilitating side affects.

Please listen to the medical professionals and do whatever you can to stop this virus

MARY O’BRIEN

Fruita

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