Fracking has ‘little to no impact’ on wildlife says enviro agency

Hydraulic fracturing operations in Western Colorado are having “little to no impact” on local wildlife, according to a new report by state regulators.

An eight-year study by Colorado Parks & Wildlife researcher Dr. Chuck Anderson found that fracking did not impact the survival or reproduction rates of the local mule deer population, but could potentially have minor impacts on their behavior. The same study found that the industry had significantly reduced its impact on the deer in recent years.

The new findings completely debunks claims by anti-fracking activists who Daily Caller New Foundationhave said for years that fracking negatively impacts western Colorado’s wildlife.

Environmentalists had used claims of harm to wildlife in their attempt to get an initiative that would have banned fracking across 90 percent of Colorado on the ballot in November, but failed to get the necessary signatures. If it had been enacted, the initiative would cost $14.5 billion in lost economic output and 104,000 jobs, according to a study by economists at the University of Colorado.

Energy is a huge portion of Colorado’s economy and fracking has caused an economic boom in Colorado. The oil and gas industry added $29.6 billion to Colorado’s economy in 2012, or about 10 percent of all annual economic activity in the state. The industries also supported 111,500 jobs, allowing the state to recover from the Great Recession faster than its neighbors.

The fracking industry in Colorado is expected to expand, too. U.S. Geological Survey officials said in June that parts of western Colorado have upwards of 40 times more natural gas than previously believed, making the state the second largest natural gas-producing formation in the America.

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This article originally appeared in The Daily Caller

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About the Author: Andrew Follett

Andrew Follett covers energy and the environment for the Daily Caller.

  • pathway

    The biggest threat to Western Colorado’s wildlife is lack of predator control.

  • If warmers or Climate Scientists believe or promote a theory, go in the opposite direction.

  • Dano2

    Andrew Follett – SHOCKER – misrepresents the findings of the study.

    The study found behavioral changes in response to energy development, quantified in another study that found

    Energy development drove considerable alterations to deer habitat selection patterns, with the most substantial impacts manifested as avoidance of well pads with active drilling to a distance of at least 800 m. Deer displayed more nuanced responses to other infrastructure, avoiding pads with active production and roads to a greater degree during the day than night. In aggregate, these responses equate to alteration of behavior by human development in over 50% of the critical winter range in our study area during the day and over 25% at night

    also

    Deer strongly avoided areas within 600 m of well pads with active drilling at all times, and this avoidance persisted out to 1000 m at night (with the strongest responses within 800 m).

    Anyone flying over NW Colo can see the large-scale fragmentation of habitat from energy development. Only a fool or a shill would conclude there are few impacts to such fragmentation.

    Best,

    D

    • Dave Swagler

      So, wild deer avoided areas with human activity? NO!! When has that ever happened?! And if you are claiming that you have spent an appreciable amount of time flying over NW Colo observing habitat fragmentation, I will know what I have long suspected; you are a lying liar who lies.

      • Dano2

        I’m claiming I looked at the scientist’s work and Follett misrepresented it.

        Not sure why you’d make those hilarious mischaracterizations, unless you are testing a comedy skit.

        Best,

        D

        • Dave Swagler

          You really aren’t half as clever or witty as you think you are.

          • Dano2

            You’re crushing this, fella.

            Best,

            D