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Colette Sweeps 1 Energy Future

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The Future of Natural Gas Development on the Western Slope Video: Colette Sweeps 1 Energy Future
The Future of Natural Gas Development on the Western Slope Mon, 15 May 2017 18:06:17 +0000 Colette Sweeps 1 Energy Future The Future of Natural Gas Development on the Western Slope KREX may 26th. gazebo park can be found now our special report, regarding the energy future of western colorado. around 35- percent of colorado is federally owned land... managed by agencies like the national forest service and the bureau of land management. but now with natural gas exports being allowed to flow to china from the u.s., there could be new opportunities arising... news channel five's colette bordelon reports.... < ñññnat soundñññ track: it is not unusual to find colorado residents waking up before the sun rises to enjoy public lands. sot: "it's nice to be able to come out and hike and be with my dogs and see the scenery. it's good." se track: 60 percent of coloradans oppose state takeover of these public lands, and sarah eller is one of them. sot: "i've hiked around 4,000 miles of long- distance backpacking and i get a variety of responses and sometimes people just don't understand why i would choose to do that, but i enjoy it so much because it helps me get back to my roots." se track: keeping public lands in public hands has become a controversial subject during a time when the country is adapting to a new presidential administration. sot: "it's a pretty great opportunity that you can drive clear across the country and enjoy your public lands." cj sot: "colorado is blessed with 24 million acres of public lands that belong to everybody, to you and to me. they're managed by the bureau of land management, the forest service, and the national park service. what the balanced uses of those lands are, is the key question." sb track: the mankos shale formation in the piceance basin is estimated to hold about 66.3 trillion cubic feet of gas, meaning it could be the second largest reserves of natural gas in the country. sot: "the grand valley is very unique in that we have world class recreation alongside world class natural gas resources. the piceance basin just north of us is possibly the largest, most abundant, natural gas plate in the world. and so we have world class resources on top of world class resources. and the thing we have to remember is, blm manages for multiple uses. that doesn't mean that all things are managed on all places, but it means where it's compatible, we might have multiple things that we're managing at the same location." cj sot: "since the first well was drilled in 1892, and there's been a level of activity ever since that day. so it's deeply ingrained in the fiber of our culture, and the fiber of our local communities, and i think that it will continue to do so in the coming decades." dl stand-up: the oil and gas industry supports over 13,000 jobs on blm managed land in colorado alone, and generates around 3.5 billion dollars of economic contributions from those lands. but natural gas prices are cheap right now, and the supply is greater than the demand, which is why natural gas producers say they would benefit from changes in regulations. sot: "when you sit on top of the second largest natural gas reserve in the country, that tremendous resource will find a way to market no matter who's in control in washington. however, the current administration has said some good things about making it easier to get permits, and that will help move forward, our ability to recover in a timely manner. and bring rigs back to the area, if those policies manifest themselves in regulation." dl track: and a change may be more drilling on public lands. sot: "specifically as they head just north of the grand valley is that, there is some energy mineral activity going on under white river national forest. that's an area that's always been a lot of interest for various energy companies. there's energy mineral potential under the grand mesa, some of the grand mesa forest areas there, and the blm manages the energy mineral state under federal property." cj track: white river is the most visited national forest in the country, and much of the land is closed to oil and gas leasing after a decision made in 2015. sot: "a recent decision on the forest plan for the white river national forest all but banned future leasing on the forest. which we think is unfortunate, and it's something that we hope to remedy under the current administration in washington, d.c. but, the good news is that, we have a huge resource under that forest, as well as under certain forest lands even around the grand valley, called the manko shale. and we believe that the potential in that shale, is something that the forest service has largely ignored in recent planning processes. and we think that when they revisit that, it will open up new areas to be leased under the current administration. it's something we're hopeful for, and it's something we think that the rest of the community by and large is hopeful for because of the jobs, prosperity, and revenues from public projects that production will create." dl track: and white river is not the only forest being considered. sot: "on the flanks of the grand mesa, particularly in delta county and in gunnison county, as you get down into the lower elevations there's tremendous manko shale development opportunities, which our companies have been pursuing and developing for 10 years. and i think that, as technology continues to advance, we'll see quite a bit of production come out of the flanks of the grand mesa." dl track: the oil and gas industry rejects the terms "boom and bust", because they still have around 15,000 wells operating here on the western slope. but still, after the record high prices of natural gas plummeted in 2008, some say they would like to see more dependence on other industries. sot: "i would like a more stable economy here. tourism is a really stable economy, we have a lot of people come here to see the monument, and bike around." mg track: one of which happens to be the outdoor recreation industry. sot: "there's a lot of positive aspects that don't depend on natural gas or oil that we could maximize." mg track: according to the annual energy outlook, natural gas production will increase despite low prices, due to more exports. with the recent decision to allow natural gas exports to flow to china and the approved jordan cove liquified natural gas project in oregon, we may be seeing more drilling on public lands. sot: "the thing about drilling, logging, using public lands, is you know, it's taken hundreds of thousands of years for our earth to create that type of an environment, and we can go in in one fell swoop, we can destroy it. and we don't know what those long term ramifications are gonna be." se track: and for eller, she hopes these decisions are made with great care. sot: "i love this earth. and you know, i'm not a powerful person. i don't play in the realm of oil and gas and i don't live in that industry, but if i had a voice if i had something to say, it would be that: i hope that those people that are in a position of power, in a position of change, allow themselves to think about, what does that mean? what does it mean, not just now, but the next day and the next day after that, and what can we do about that. and we've seen ramifications from our hasty actions before, i mean it's proof, we see it, and so let's learn from that." se track: balancing natural gas development and recreation is a tricky task, one that is important in ensuring we can both heat the house, and take a hike. reporting from grand junction, i'm

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