Facts have a nasty habit of contradicting nonsense.
If you are someone like President Trump, you deal with the intractable fact problem by just ignoring the existence of true, provable information altogether; this approach got Trump a room at the White House, but it hasn’t been as effective since the 2016 election. Trump’s effusive display of non-factual information has nevertheless emboldened a number of politicians and right-wing sycophants eager to use their bullshit currency whenever possible.
During the 2019 Colorado legislative session, many Republicans shook their fists from the mountaintops about Senate Bill 181, an oil and gas regulation bill that opponents claimed would completely destroy the fossil fuel industry in Colorado and turn us all into a bunch of penniless fools destined to stumble around the Eastern Plains with empty gas cans. As it turned out, this was not even sorta true, but the mythology persists: Just last week a large number of fingers were again pointed at SB-181 amid news that energy giant Halliburton was laying off hundreds of workers (including 178 in Grand Junction). Halliburton itself blamed “local market conditions” resulting from low oil prices and a general surplus of oil and gas in the United States, but that didn’t stop right-wing voices in Colorado from yelling about SB-181.
As Ed Sealover of the Denver Business Journal reported last week, Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) directed his ire at SB-181 during a Colorado Chamber of Commerce event in Denver:
On oil and gas regulations, Gardner swerved from federal policy to attack Senate Bill 181 — the Colorado law signed in April allowing local governments more control over drilling and requiring state officials to consider public health and safety above other factors in permitting decisions — saying that it is slowing the number of drilling-permit applications, which will lead to a loss of activity and loss of jobs in the coming years. He said he supports an “all of the above” policy of promoting both traditional and renewable energy; when pressed, he said his focus on renewables includes support for increased funding for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden but will not include any mandated percentage of national energy that should come from renewable sources.
“We should increase the percentage of fuel that is clean energy,” Gardner said. “But we should let the market work.” [Pols emphasis]
We highlighted that last part for reasons that will soon become obvious. As Greg Avery reports this afternoon for the Denver Business Journal, the market appears to be working just fine:
Jagged Peak Energy Inc., a Denver-based oil and gas company, is merging with a larger Texas company in a deal worth nearly $2.3 billion that consolidates operations in Texas’ Delaware Basin.
The deal, if it closes as expected early next year, will leave Denver with one less headquarters of a publicly-traded oil and gas company.
So…a Denver-based oil and gas company is merging with a larger Texas company not because of production problems in Colorado, but in order to consolidate operations in Texas.
We all know what’s happening here: Colorado SB-181 is now destroying the oil and gas industry in other states!