All rights reserved
We chose to live in a beautiful area of western Garfield County in Northwestern Colorado that happens to be resource-rich with natural gas, shale oil, crude oil, coal, and other energy-producing resources. So for nearly 100 years, locals in Western Colorado have been pricked, prodded, drilled, fracked, mined and even bombed in the attempts to extract these minerals. Members of the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance have extensive experience at when it comes to energy development – especially regarding oil-and-gas drilling. We developed this website to share our story so that others can learn and gain from our experiences. GVCA would also like to thank the Aspen Environmental Foundation for its support, which gave us this voice.
The Grand Valley Citizens Alliance (go to top of page)
Together with other community sister-groups across the Western United States, Grand Valley Citizens Alliance enjoys the financial and networked support of parent organization: Western Organization of Resource Councils, and its Colorado component: Western Colorado Congress . The overarching framework of WORC and WCC have ensured that Grand Valley Citizens Alliance has an equal voice in national energy affairs, enabling much of the important work we conduct at the local level.
Effective Citizen-led Campaigns (go to top of page)
GVCA’s trail-blazing achievements have been thanks to the tireless efforts of active, local citizens championing the preservation of what makes our valley such a special place to call home.
2003 - Led the way to help protect the Roan Plateau from invasive and destructive drilling
2005 - Developed and implemented a first-of-its-kind community drilling plan
2009 - Led the way to the revision of statewide natural gas drilling rules
2008 - Successfully challenged citizen non-standing to protest drilling at Rulison Nuclear Test Site
2011 – Championed the launch of a first-in-the-nation comprehensive Health Impact Assessment relative to natural gas drilling emissions and impacts to human health
2011 – Launched a community-based, citizen led “Bucket Brigade” in which specially trained volunteers capture air samples for chemical analysis.
The current make-up of GVCA’s membership and board – as well as the evolving landscape of regulatory policy from the federal to the county level reflects a proud and collaborative history of citizen-led advocacy against some very difficult circumstances.
Future Challenges (go to top of page)
Challenges persist even as new industries with proven records of environmental destruction emerge on the near horizon. Natural gas exploration, operations, production and facilities include the establishment of roads, pads and wellbores together with compressor stations and gathering lines. Disruptive activities can include drilling, hydraulic fracturing and heavy truck transport all of which can threaten and degrade air, water, local roads and wildlife habitat. Fresh water use and waste disposal are additional public safety matters, given that the natural gas industry relies upon millions of gallons of fresh water use per well and current methods of disposal include deep well injection, land farming and dumping into Colorado ’s waterways.
Hundreds of acres of public lands are being opened to the development of under-regulated fossil fuel development, as permits for oil and gas operations continue to grow. This has led to industrial sites spreading into urban areas, sensitive water sheds and near schools. Other areas close to western Garfield County, such as the Thompson Divide in south Garfield County, is the latest target for natural gas production.
Indeed, we have a long way to go.
Challenges Mean Opportunities (go to top of page)
The current cultural, political and economic climate offer a wealth of opportunities to get involved and help guide our region in the right direction. Your skills… your voice… your passion for positive participation are all welcome here. Together we can generate meaningful momentum and enact lasting change.
GVCA represents a legacy of effective leadership and historic, real-world perspective on critical energy issues in our valley. The future of GVCA will be determined by the priorities set by our citizen participants.
You are invited to work with us as we strengthen collaborative partnerships with other leading organizations in the valley; develop outreach and educational programs; and press for greater health and environmental study – all toward the attainable goal of preserving the character of our valley while promoting better-balanced and sustainable energy development.
GVCA offers a uniquely grassroots and regionally supported place to share your concerns, ideas and participation. Become an active member of GVCA today, and help shape the future of our valley home!
You Can Make A Real and Lasting Difference (go to top of page)
As we face Western Colorado’s future, challenging choices loom, and with them enormous consequences.
The very character of our home is facing irreversible alteration as heavy industry threatens to permanently alter the landscape of the Colorado River Valley so many of us love and depend upon for a variety of industries like tourism, agriculture and construction trades. We believe a robust economy needs diversity and a healthy environment to call home.
Join the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance today. Become a financial supporter, or, go a step further and participate in our next meeting. We invite you to contribute to future strategies, develop planning, help coordinate local citizen leaders in your community and effect instrumental change on the ground.
Together we can chart a real and powerful course toward a more united community, responsive political representatives and a more sustainable and productive energy future. Join GVCA today!
All rights reserved
All rights reserved
"We developed this website to share our story so that others can learn and gain from our experiences"