Dear Industry Friends,
Our oil and natural gas industry is no stranger to challenges.
From our very beginnings, when the hunt for oil was imprecise and too often came up dry, to today’s rocky global commodity markets and activist upheaval, we always have been forced to innovate and adapt in order to grow and survive these ever-changing challenges.
Fortunately, we are an industry of doers and thinkers, of risk takers and scientists; an industry of compassion and precision, of innovation and grit.
One year ago, after the tragic accident in Firestone, we found ourselves challenged in the deepest possible ways. I have been proud to work in oil and gas, but never more so than in the past year.
Our shared belief that the work we do enables people to live longer, happier, healthier, and more productive lives has helped us endure tough times in the past. But we also know that the safety of our families, friends and communities is our highest value.
COGA’s operators acted swiftly and strongly last summer, immediately supporting the state’s call to inspect and test more than 120,000 flowlines across the state. Within weeks we learned that nearly every single line – 99.65 percent of them – passed inspection. Of the tiny fraction that did not, no significant leaks were reported. It was one step in the right direction, showing Coloradans that we are safe and transparent.
Within months, industry participated in, and supported a complicated rulemaking process that ended with Colorado passing the most comprehensive flowline rules in the country, requiring more frequent integrity testing, mapping of new flowlines and mandatory Tier 1 industry participation in the state’s 811 “call before you dig” program.
These steps, and the many others that have been taken, are important to build trust with the communities where we live and work.
Oil and gas is a safe industry and has only gotten safer in the past year. As an industry, we understand that our social license to operate depends on Coloradans being sure of that.
We have been developing oil and natural gas resources in Colorado since 1860 – 16 years before statehood. We have drilled tens of thousands of wells and logged millions of employee-hours out in the field. And each day, our high-tech industry gets smarter and more innovative as we work to make our operations safer and cleaner.
We should take pride in that.
For the foreseeable future, our industry will remain under an intense media and regulatory spotlight. It’s important that we stay united, that we help each other through the political vitriol, that we maintain compassion for our neighbors, and that we double down on our efforts to do it better than anywhere else.
We can’t be afraid to talk about our industry. We can’t let our confidence wane.
We produce a product that Coloradans need and rely on every single day. We produce affordable and efficient energy that heats our homes in winter, keeps us cool in the summer, and connects us in so many amazing ways.
Our industry is made up of hardworking men and women who care deeply about the work they do. You care about our state and its environment, and you are always striving to do more, to make sure our air, water, and land are protected. To make sure our coworkers, friends, and communities are safe. To make sure that we bring value to our economy and to our way of life.
We are proud of our industry, we are proud of the important work that each of you do, and together we stand committed to Colorado.
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