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Home / Articles / Views / In Case You Missed It /  In case you missed it | Valmont project lingers
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Thursday, May 23,2013

In case you missed it | Valmont project lingers

By Boulder Weekly Staff
Photo by Jefferson Dodge

We found out last week from city of Boulder officials that the ongoing cleanup at Valmont Butte that Boulder Weekly devoted a 10-part series and 38,000 words to last year has been delayed — again.

We reported in November that the $5 million cleanup of the 103-acre contaminated property that the city bought more than a dozen years ago was running $1.4 million over budget and three months late. It was supposed to be completed in December, but we were assured it would be done by March.

Well, March has come and gone, and project leader Joe Castro, facilities and fleet manager for the city, says the weather — like the heavy snowstorms we got last month — have delayed the project’s completion until June or July. But he insists that there have been no additional budget overruns.

Curious that weather would have caused such a lengthy delay. Are the prairie dogs staging a fierce uprising against the placement of rocks over their favorite area to burrow into contaminated earth?

We can’t wait to see what happens next.

MONSANTO MADNESS

You may have heard that a “March Against Monsanto” is being held on Saturday, May 25, in cities around the world, including Boulder, and we can’t wait to see how many anti-GMO activists show up.

The Boulder protest against the genetically modified food behemoth starts at noon in Central Park, at the southwest corner of Canyon and Broadway.

The “March Against Monsanto” website says the protests will occur at the same time in more than 250 cities, in 36 countries, on six continents.

This company has a real PR problem on its hand, doesn’t it? It’s never a good sign when thousands, if not millions, of people all over the world are lining up to protest against you.

It’s just another reminder for Monsanto, major oil and gas companies and any other corporate powerhouse that thinks it can just buy its way through profitable endeavors that could endanger public health.

All the money in the world won’t help you spin the facts. The people will see through the haze, to the truth. And they will not go quietly.

WHAT THE FRACK?

We got an interesting email from Cliff Willmeng of East Boulder County United about one of the lesser-known impacts of fracking: truck traffic.

Willmeng took a look at the “Boulder County Oil and Gas Roadway Impact Study” recently presented to the county ommissioners, and found that each well fracked in Boulder County would take about 2,206 truck trips to complete. Given the commissioners’ estimate that up to 1,800 wells are conceivable in Boulder County, he says, this equates to 3,970,800 truck trips to complete these wells. And according to Willmeng if we assume that the average tractor-trailer length is 70 feet and we lined them up bumper to bumper, the resulting line of trucks would span from New York to Los Angeles and back to New York more than 10 times.

He rightly points out that the study assumes the wells are only fracked once. In reality, wells can be fracked up to 18 times, Willmeng says.

“Can you imagine, from truck traffic alone, what the sky above Boulder County might look like to someone from on top of the Flatirons by the end of this process?”

Thanks Cliff, we couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com

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