Colorado Supreme Court hears regarding hydraulic fracturing

The Colorado Supreme Court is hearing arguments Wednesday related to the battle over the oil and gas industry’s use of hydraulic fracturing in the state of Colorado.

Two cases, a ban on the use of hydraulic fracturing in Longmont, and a five-year moratorium on the practice in Fort Collins, are set to be heard as the state’s high court weighs in on whether or not local governments in Colorado can restrict hydraulic fracturing.

Longmont initially imposed regulations on oil and gas activity within the town in 2012. A lawsuit by then-Colorado Attorney General John Suthers was filed. The city then voted to ban the practice.

In 2013, despite Gov. Hickenlooper’s assertion that local governments aren’t in position to regulate the oil and gas industry, the city council of Fort Collins banned hydraulic fracturing within its city limits. A lawsuit by The Colorado Oil and Gas Association followed, noting the right to regulate oil and gas drilling lies with the state.

Lower courts sided with the oil and gas industry and the cases moved to the Colorado Court of Appeals, and then to the state Supreme Court.

Rulings in today’s arguments have not yet been released.

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