In the Beginning…

Fracked wells in Pawnee National Grasslands

When I moved to Longmont, Colorado this summer, “fracking” was everywhere–petitions at the farmers’ market, court cases involving cities’ bans in the news daily, and drill pads dotting the landscape. I had a basic understanding of what hydraulic fracturing (aka fracking) is, but I wasn’t as familiar with the controversy surrounding it. As I started my Master’s in Environmental Studies program at CU Boulder, I decided to write my first research paper on fracking. It quickly became a focus for me, both in my studies and my personal life.

In this blog, I will write about the nexus of environment, energy, and policy in the American West. I am initially focusing on fracking because it will play a role in the November elections in Colorado and elsewhere.

While that will be my initial focus, I will later address other policy and energy issues, such as renewable energy and what will be addressed at the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference in Paris. I firmly believe humankind needs to reduce our carbon footprint. However, I recognize getting there will not be easy and that rhetoric on both sides of environmental issues only makes it that much harder to get the needed work done.

My goal is to provide you with balanced coverage of energy and environmental issues, so you can make better informed decisions on what you can do and what we (the West, the nation, the world) need to do. I will give you my take on the energy and environmental issues in the news, but I will also let you know about the latest studies appearing in scientific journals and reports coming out of governmental agencies, such as the EPA.

Since you are reading this, I assume you want to do your part to protect the environment. What can I do to help you take action? If you better understood the environmental issues you hear about in the news and what they mean to you, would that help? Feel free to ask me any questions you have about energy or environmental issues in the West and I’ll get you the answer.

When you are better informed, you can take actions such as making changes in your personal life, getting involved in an issue, or make your feelings known to your political representatives. If any of those happened, then this blog would be truly successful.

Our environment is under pressure, our energy system is under pressure, our planet is under pressure. Let’s stop the rhetoric and instead focus on finding solutions to relieve that pressure.

The included photo, by Bryce Bradford, is used under a Creative Commons license.

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5 responses to “In the Beginning…

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