Drillers gassing on about support for state regulations


If you figured the calls to "Drill, baby, drill" faded with Sarah Palin's political prospects, think again.

COGA and the oil and gas companies backing the powerful trade group spent 18 months lobbying against Gov. Bill Ritter's plan to protect Colorado's soil and groundwater from the toxic fluids they inject underground to free up wells, a process known as fracking.

They warned disingenuously that the rules would push the industry out. Companies haven't budged.

… Inspired by Colorado's new rules, U.S. lawmakers in June proposed bills to protect the whole country from frenzied fracking and lift a loophole that exempted the fluids from regulations such as the Safe Drinking Water Act.

Industry scrambled to come up with an argument, any argument, against the so-called Frac Act as it gains momentum in Congress. So COGA pulled one out of thin air, feigning so much support for new state rules that, it argued, federal ones would be unnecessary.