The exciting official review of CDPHE’s air quality study has just been released. OK, so it’s not so exciting, but that’s good, isn’t it?
Once again, Erie’s air and water have shown to be clean — very clean in fact.
The Town of Erie has just presented the third factual analysis of the second air quality test in less than a year, and with optimal results. The analysis was done by the Pinyon Group, recommended by activists themselves — you can’t be more fair than that.
Are we over doing it? Especially considering there has never been any real sign or evidence of a problem?
Consider this; last year at this time, a controversial political activist group and followers emerged to incite fear and angst in the community with highly misleading and emotionally charged rhetoric about hydraulic fracturing of oil and gas wells. Out-of-state lobby and special interest groups had descended upon the town, regularly sending teams of petition pushers to knock on doors.
Public officials in Boulder were shouted down, while angry, loud activists ran down and intimidated people who didn’t agree with or think like them.
All of this press is based on allegations and accusations that were missing one essential thing — any proof.
Swiftly and responsibly, the Erie Town Board and staff set out to cut through the hype and get to the facts, and that we did.
Here’s what we found: in ongoing, daily tests over the last decade, municipal water shows no signs of incursion from any industry. Air tests from NOAA show we have trace propane levels 1,000 fold below EPA minimum concern levels (on a side note, that is 10 times the level in coastal Pasadena, which has virtually no propane, but is often referenced).
Colorado Department of Public Health’s air quality tests conducted at the Canyon Creek well during frack and finish phases, show element and pollutant levels that are anywhere from “not present” to well within acceptable limits. To put it in context, the well produces roughly 500 times fewer emissions than pick-up and drop-off activity at the nearby school parking lot. Finding out the well site is safer than an elementary school should be important information to concerned residents.
So the answer is no. Regularly obtaining and monitoring facts and the truth is not overkill, it’s essential. This comprehensive data provides peace of mind and quality of life for those who still value the facts over innuendo. Don’t think extremists will simply disappear, though. The truth angers deceivers. There will still be the occasional cleverly worded statements that don’t exactly say anything but insinuate everything (after all, deception is the hallmark of such groups).
One thing you can count on, though, is for a majority of those in town hall to be vigilant in keeping the facts available to you the citizens, and common sense policies in place to serve your best interests. That’s the Erie way.