Fracking banned in three Colorado towns

A fourth community narrowly rejected a moratorium

Topics: fracking, anti-fracking, Colorado, Boulder, 2013 Elections, ,

Official election results are still coming in, but Reuters is reporting that fracking bans and suspensions have passed in three out of the four Colorado communities that put the issue on the ballot yesterday:

Seventy-eight percent of Boulder residents voted to suspend fracking within city limits for five years, while a similar measure won 56 percent support in Fort Collins.

In Lafayette, a city ordinance that permanently bans fracking within the city passed with 59 percent of the vote.

Broomfield defeated the measure by just 13 votes out of more than 20,500 cast, according to unofficial returns posted on the city’s website.

Prior to Election Day, according to the Wall Street Journal, activists were hoping that success in these four towns could help build momentum for a statewide anti-fracking effort next year. It remains unclear whether the bans will stick, though — another Colorado city that imposed a fracking ban is now facing lawsuits from both the state government and the oil and gas association.

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But as National Journal reports, the bans’ supporters are optimistic that the partial victory will do something:

“I think this will raise awareness,” said Democratic state Rep. Joann Ginal, who represents Fort Collins, at a victory party for the anti-fracking campaign Tuesday night. “I know that New York and Pennsylvania and Ohio and many other states have been trying to raise awareness. I think this will result in more awareness.”

Lindsay Abrams

Lindsay Abrams is a staff writer at Salon, reporting on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email labrams@salon.com.

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