Governor John Hickenlooper complained about critics saying he is too close to the drilling industry in Colorado. “I am constantly attacked now for being in the pocket of oil and gas, or somehow subservient to their philosophy or their wish,” he said at a lecture last month.
The Governor shouldn’t be surprised about his well-earned reputation. He has shamelessly worked on behalf of oil and gas companies at the expense of the health and wellbeing of Colorado families.
When Colorado approved new groundwater rules in January, critics called it the weakest program in the nation for granting a massive exemption in the Greater Wattenberg area of Northern Colorado. Known as the “Anadarko-Noble Loophole,” this exemption covered 25 percent of all active oil and gas wells in Colorado and a whopping two-thirds of all new drilling permits. In fact, Gov. Hickenlooper’s commission provided the weakest water testing standards and groundwater protections for people living in the most heavily populated part of the state where shale oil fracking and drilling is happening.
But, you don’t have to take our word for it that the Governor is the drilling industry’s best pal. In January, a lobbyist for Chesapeake Energy accidentally emailed a strategy memo that revealed their admiration of the Governor: “His relationship to the oil & gas industry is strong and he has been a national leader speaking out against the anti-fracturing forces that have invaded Colorado.”