Eco-briefs | Fort Collins bans fracking

Many racks fill up fast and leave commuters with no parking.
Photo by Erica Lindberg

Following in the footsteps of Longmont, the Fort Collins City Council voted to approve an initial ban on hydraulic fracturing within city limits.

A 5-2 vote adopted the ordinance calling for a ban on fracking and passed a resolution requesting regulatory power from the state to regulate oil and gas exploration within the city’s limits.

“Rather than delegating authority to the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission, for example, local authority could be held over oil and gas regulation,” Laurie Kadrich, director of Community Development and Neighborhood Services, said during a city council meeting.

The resolution requests local control over decisions such as fracking within city limits, supporting the City of Longmont’s decision to self-regulate. Regulation of oil and gas exploration currently falls under the jurisdiction of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC).

“This resolution would provide support to the City of Longmont for local regulation over oil and gas and the efforts they have underway,” Kadrich says.

The City of Longmont is currently in litigation with the state over municipal drilling regulations.

The COGCC is a division of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources. Some of the commission’s goals, as stated on its website, are to “promote the exploration, development and conservation of Colorado’s oil and gas natural resources,” as well as “prevent and mitigate adverse impacts to public health, safety, welfare and the environment.”

A final consideration meeting for the Fort Collins City Council will be held on March 5.

— Erica Lindberg


A need for more — and better — bike racks is being addressed through a new bike rack subsidy program announced by the City of Boulder and the city’s partner, Community Cycles. The program will offer cheap bike racks and discounted installation for qualifying businesses.

Bike parking spots at private shopping centers and local businesses are inadequate because many of them were established before new standards — which consider a higher demand for secure racks — were put into place, according to city Bicycle/Pedestrian Transportation Planner Marni Ratzel.

“This pilot program seeks to address the lack of quality bike parking for bicyclists and business,” Ratzel says.

Once a business is accepted to the program, a Community Cycles representative will determine the best spot for the rack and offer installation at a discounted rate. Businesses with a do-it-yourself approach will have six weeks to install their racks after delivery. All businesses are in charge of rack maintenance including snow removal.

“We are really excited to be part of this project that is addressing the needs of people who ride bikes in Boulder,” says Sue Prant, Community Cycles Advocacy Director.

Based on a first come, first served system, businesses can apply for up to five u-type racks at $50 a piece by filling out an online form available on Community Cycles’ website,

— Erica Lindberg