Shale Policy Outlook: Battleground Colorado
BMI View : We believe recent public referendums to suspend and/or ban fracking in several Colorado municipalities will have little immediate impact, noting that the predominately urban areas that passed the measures had very little unconventional activity to begin with. However, the votes do signal a growing division within the state on this issue. This suggests that come the November 2014 mid-term election - where we expect to see an attempt to introduce a state-wide moratorium - Colorado could become an important litmus test for the oil and gas industry.
We believe recent events are setting Colorado up as a key battleground on fracking ahead of the US 2014 midterm elections. In the state's recent November 5 th local elections, three of the four municipalities that had fracking bans or moratoriums on the ballot voted in favour of the measures. Indeed, resolutions calling for a five-year moratorium in Fort Collins and Boulder received considerable backing, passing with 56% and 77% support, respectively. This came despite the fact that Fort Collins City Council had approved a resolution opposing the moratorium, in an attempt to steer citizens away from voting for it. Meanwhile, Lafayette, which already has a three-year moratorium in place on fracking saw 58% in favour of banning the practice. Only Broomfield said no to a suspension on fracking, narrowly rejecting the moratorium with 50.0% of the vote against the measure (though a recount is likely).
|Big Wins In Boulder and Fort Collins|
|Colorado - 2013 Municipal Election Results: Place/Extend A 5-Year Moratorium On Fracking?|