With Antero threatening to leave Colorado and Pucket Land Company getting permission to shove toxic chemicals deep into an old well pad, clearly the Oil and Gas Companies are behaving like mafia thugs. First they beat you up, then they bring you roses to the hospital. We allow them to invest highly into our communities, then we are forced to allow them to do the indefensible. We begin having deleterious effects but because they have invested in the communities their leaving would bring hardships, then we get sick, then they return with no compromise, then they invest and hire, then they one day pull out without much notice or none leaving a mess in their wake. Why doesn’t Rifle become the seat of renewable energy? It has lots of sun and wind. It has a capable workforce and the energy. Someone surely could devise and provide a low cost solar package that would be competitive to the much higher one now selling in Carbondale. Why would we continue with the above scenario? Isn’t the community behaving like an abused spouse? As Einstein said, insanity is defined as doing the same thing and hoping for a different answer. I think we are at that crossroad. Either we become the chemical experiment of the gas and oil companies or we change our focus. Why don’t our community leaders start looking for new alternatives? Is their inertia that they are so in bed with the O&G companies? Creativity and solutions come from problems just like these. When I was in Mexico at an energy expo, I saw small wind turbines that individual owners could put on their properties. In the early ’70s, I lived in Philadelphia when the downtown was thought lost from riots and abandonment. Local young people (hippies) bought up these dilapidated and abandoned townhouses and buildings and turned them into interesting and fun homes using recycled materials. Then young entrepreneurs started buying them and upgrading them, now they are awesome properties in areas near and in downtown Philadelphia. Fearlessly, we need new ideas and a pathway away from fossil fuels. Alice GustafsonGlenwood Springs
On Jan. 3, Don Deford stepped down from his position as Garfield County Attorney, a position he held for 25 years. During that time, he represented the county before the Colorado Supreme Court, state courts, district courts and county courts. He represented the county during what was arguably the most significant time in Garfield County history. He did so with distinction, professionalism, concern, and above all, integrity. Don had no agenda (something sorely missing in all of government today) except the law and Garfield County. He brought sanity to an almost dysfunctional county government.I would like to say he will be missed, and he will be by those who know him and worked closely with him, but he will not be missed by the powers that run this county. They always viewed Don as a thorn in their side. He always expected the county to follow the law. To the next county attorney, you have large shoes to fill. I hope you are up to the task. Don leaves his department in good shape, with no skeletons, but beware of those who hire you!Coming from a person who has little use for most bureaucrats, if all were like Don, we would not have near the problems we do today in how this country is run. I wish Don all the best, and thanks for a job well done.Terry FattorGlenwood Springs
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