After enacting a moratorium on new oil and gas operation permits that lasts through most of 2021, Larimer County officials have set a series of public hearings to get feedback.
The first one is scheduled for May 6, and will be conducted both live and on video conference. Larimer County Community Development wants public input on air quality, water quality (state standards), other environmental standards, emergency response and nuisance issues, according to the meeting schedule on the Larimer County website. Instruction for submitting written testimony is also on the website.
“Further public comment will help with amending the current regulations regarding the development and transmission of oil and gas in Larimer County,” according to a news release.
Earlier this month, Larimer County Commissioners voted unanimously to extend the moratorium on new permits through Sept. 15. They also voted unanimously to extend the temporary ban on new “1041 permits,” which apply to larger projects impacting many landowners like solar panel projects, wind farms or pipelines, until Dec. 15.
“This will give the public time to weigh in on the pros and cons” of new regulations, Commissioner John Kefalas, District 1, said at the meeting. “We have the legal authority and this does establish a level of certainty, because now our oil and gas regulations do not align with the state. We are not about an indefinite moratorium.”
Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commissions’ sweeping new rules for oil and gas operators, including stricter setback limits, took effect Jan. 15. Larimer County conducted a slew of public hearings and drafted new regulations in 2019 and 2020.