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Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews. 

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Big Oil Wins Ballot Initiatives In Colorado, Washington

Big Oil has poured a lot of money to defeat energy-restricting ballot initiatives in various states in the midterm elections, and it succeeded in two key votes.

Voters in Colorado were asked to vote on a ballot proposition to increase the setback distance for drilling oil and gas wells by five times to 2,500 feet, which would have put a lot of land off limits for new developments. Voters in Washington State voted on a proposal to instate a U.S. first state-wide carbon tax.

Both initiatives failed, and both ‘no’ camps were supported by Big Oil.

In Colorado, Proposition 112 requiring much greater setback distance failed with 56.75 percent of votes against, a relief for Colorado drillers such as Anadarko, Noble Energy, and Devon Energy who had sponsored the ‘no’ camp in the campaign.

“We’re grateful that Coloradans stood with the energy sector to oppose this measure. I want every Coloradan to know that we are committed to developing our resources in a responsible manner that protects the environment and keeps our employees and communities healthy and safe,” Dan Haley, President & CEO of the Colorado Oil & Gas Association, said in a statement. Related: Is Shale The Future For Big Oil?

“This measure was an extreme proposal that would have had devastating impacts across the state on jobs, education and numerous other programs important to each of us,” said Chip Rimer, Chairman of COGA’s Board of Directors and Senior Vice President of Global Services at Noble Energy.

Washington State voters rejected the carbon tax initiative with 56.3 percent opposed to the initiative and 43.7 percent supporting it, in another win for Big Oil, which had spent more than US$31 million to fight the initiative, double the amount that environmental activists and billionaires had raised to back the measure.

In a setback for Big Oil in Florida, voters passed a measure banning offshore oil drilling in state waters.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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Leave a comment
  • Randy Verret on November 07 2018 said:
    OK, first I'm tired of the label "Big Oil." Who is that...Gazprom, Saudi Aramco, Petrobras? I'll bet 95% of the folks (statewide) in Colorado probably aren't even familiar with Anadarko, Noble or Devon, so let's cut out all the negative inferences associated with "Big Oil" & go to work. Thankfully, the voters made a wise decision on Prop 112. This new "lease on life" at the ballot box does not change ANYTHING on the ground in places like the DJ Basin. It remains incumbent on the oil & gas industry to work collaboratively with state & local governments, developers, planning commissions, HOA's, royalty owners & even environmental groups to look for CONSTRUCTIVE solutions along the Front Range. There won't be any EASY BUTTON...

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