News, July 8th

STATE HEALTH OFFICIALS CONSIDER AIR QUALITY RULES FOR DRILLING

Denver—The state of Colorado needs to get tougher with the oil and gas industry regarding air pollution according to environmental activists.  Environmental groups are urging the state health department to impose and expand pollution controls on the industry that is currently under the purview of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.  Critics of the current system of rulemaking say the C-O-G-C-C is too soft on the industry.  Right now, the state health department’s air pollution regulations apply only to metro areas along the front range.  According to recent air quality reports, oil and gas emissions are the main source of volatile organic compounds in Colorado and the third largest source of nitrogen oxides.

CSU GAS EMISSIONS STUDY LEAVES OUT NAMES OF POLLUTERS

Fort Collins—The Colorado State University study of oil and gas drilling emissions that Garfield County is taking part in, has come under fire for not releasing specific information about the names of the polluters.  A half-dozen companies are paying 150 thousand dollars each for the study of gas transmission lines and 360 thousand dollars is coming from the Environmental Defense Fund.  Through a Colorado Open Records Act  request, the companies paying for the study were identified as Dow Pipeline, Kinder Morgan, Williams Partners, Dominion Transmission and CenterPoint Energy Gas Transmission along with the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America.

BOMB MATERIALS FOUND IN GRAND JUNCTION

GRAND JUNCTION (AP) – Grand Junction police are trying to find out who left a backpack loaded with improvised explosives near an apartment complex.
Police described the devices as bottles and canisters filled with gunpowder, sealed by duct tape with fuses attached. An entire building in the Racquet Club apartment complex was evacuated for more than two hours Sunday afternoon after the bomb squad was called to defuse the devices. A Grand Junction Police Department spokesman would not say whether the items were actually capable of exploding, confirming only that they were homemade. As of Sunday evening, no arrests had been made. Police would not say if they had any suspects in the case.

THEATER SHOOTING SUSPECT’S PARENTS CAN ATTEND TRIAL

CENTENNIAL (AP) – A judge says the parents of the man accused of killing 12 people and wounding 70 others at a Colorado movie theater can sit in on his trial.
Judge Carlos A. Samour previously granted a request from James Holmes’ attorneys to sequester witnesses at his trial that is set to start in February, but his attorneys wanted an exception for Holmes’ parents. Prosecutors didn’t object, and the judge granted the request Monday. The judge also asked the sides to schedule a hearing on images prosecutors might present at trial. Holmes’ attorneys want to limit graphic images of victims’ injuries. Holmes has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to more than 160 counts, including murder stemming from the July 20 theater attack in Aurora. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

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