Over 2,000 oil and gas industry employees rally at the Colorado State Capitol
DENVER - In a strong show of support for the oil and gas industry, state troopers estimate 3,500 people rallied on the steps of the Colorado state capitol this afternoon. Organized by local energy companies, the rally was attended by industry employees, their families, and members of the community who stand behind this vital part of Colorado's economy.
"As we face yet another attempt by anti-oil and natural gas activists to ban new development in Colorado, it's incredible to see our employees stand together and fight for their industry, their livelihoods, and the jobs they need to keep food on their tables," said COGA President and CEO Dan Haley.
"The industry in Colorado supports more than 100,000 jobs and generates $31 billion dollars in economic activity. A ban of our industry would not only hurt oil and natural gas families but would have severe ripple effects throughout Colorado's economy. If approved by voters, Initiative 97 would kill an estimated 147,000 jobs by 2030 - many of them outside our industry due to the interconnectedness of our economy and the important role energy plays within it. Colorado's energy employees take great pride in their work - and their jobs - and today their voices were heard loud and clear. We are proud to work here. We are proud to live here. And we stand united as Coloradans."
Led by Liberty Oilfield Services, CEO Chris Wright, the rally featured short speeches thanking members of industry for their contributions to the economy and our communities. The speaker lineup included former Secretary of the Interior under President George W. Bush, Gale Norton; CEO of the Tennyson Center for Children, Ned Breslin; CEO of Petroshare and former Denver Bronco safety, Steve Foley; and VP of Civic Engagement for ACE Scholarships and State Representative for HD - 7, James Coleman.
"The modern world is not possible without oil and gas," said Liberty's Chris Wright. "Together, with dramatic advances in human liberty, the mass production of oil and gas has improved the human condition in ways that would have been simply unimaginable to our ancestors. I felt tremendous pride today as our industry stood together to celebrate our contributions to not only Colorado but humankind."
Secretary Norton touted the advances our country has made in a relatively short time. "American energy independence was once thought to be impossible, yet with advances in technology, our country is rapidly moving in that direction. In 2006, the U.S. imported 60 percent of our oil. This year, we are more secure because we rely on foreign sources for only 15 percent and that number continues to decline. I think this is something we should celebrate."
The strong turnout at the rally serves as a reminder that the oil and natural gas industry is not only a critical piece of our modern economy and contemporary society, but it is also comprised of Coloradans who love living and working in our great state.
Recent Analysis of Initiative 97
Founded in 1984, the Colorado Oil & Gas Association's (COGA) mission is to foster and promote the beneficial, efficient, responsible and environmentally sound development, production and use of Colorado oil and natural gas. COGA is a nationally recognized trade association that aggressively promotes the expansion of Rocky Mountain natural gas markets, supply, and transportation infrastructure through its growing and diverse membership.