A toxic release summary from the Center for Western Priorities (CWP) reported that 712 oil and chemical spills occurred in 2014 — amounting to two spills each day in the state.
The center gathered its data from the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC).
“The Oil and Gas Task Force has a rare opportunity to provide leadership and strike a balance between oil and gas development and the long-term well-being of Colorado’s communities and our renowned lands,” Greg Zimmerman, policy director at CWP, said in a North Denver News article. “The risk of spills is one of the major ways that residents in the oil patch bear a disproportionate burden from the state’s energy boom. It’s precisely why they deserve a say in how and where development takes place.”
The report indicated that 51 of the spills contained more than five barrels (210 gallons) of oil.
Though 33 percent of the spills occurred within 50 feet of groundwater, only 11 percent resulted in water contamination.
Of the more than 700 spills, 30 percent occurred within 1,500 feet of a building.