Developers of Wyoming’s largest wind energy installation backed by Colorado billionaire Philip Anschutz have obtained permission from state authorities to build and operate what may be the biggest such project in North America.
Natural gas wells in the Pavillion Gas Field were properly drilled and maintained, but more study is needed to prove if energy operations contaminated drinking water in the region, according to a draft report released by Wyoming regulators Wednesday.
Gov. John Hickenlooper had hoped to pass legislation that would stave off some of the ballot measures, but those efforts stalled mid-July. And lately, many Coloradans who don’t normally think about energy are being deluged with messages by groups with very different agendas.
The study, conducted by Golder Associates, a global engineering and environmental consultancy, shows oil and natural gas activities use markedly less water than agricultural, municipal, recreational, and other industrial activities.
Next year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will decide whether or not to list the sage grouse as an endangered species. It has the potential to be a watershed moment, and not just for the bird, whose numbers have been in steady decline for a half-century.