Over One Million Coloradans Voted for Safer Setbacks from Oil and Gas: A Message from 350 CO Executive Director

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Bill McKibben with 350 CO’s Micah Parkin

While Prop 112 did not pass, over a million Coloradans voted for safer setbacks from drilling and fracking. Regardless of the outcome, each step, each moment, each vote, strengthens our movement, and we are not giving up.

Bill McKibben asked us to pass on this message:“Hats off to y’all. Being outspent 40-1 has to be some kind of record. I’m so grateful for everything you guys did. I know it’s tough after a long fight, but having these fights is how we build the momentum that will eventually help us win the larger goal.”

We are incredibly proud and grateful to the thousands of volunteers who made up this grassroots campaign, and the major way in which our 350 network statewide – all of you – represented! The oil and gas industry spent $50M (against 112 and for 74, which fortunately failed) on an overwhelming disinformation campaign, while our work with Proposition 112 contributes to the long-range work we are doing to make the shift away from a harmful fossil fuel industry.

Millions of people are now awakened to the dangers of fracking, thanks to extensive local, state and national coverage of our efforts. The industry’s social license to pollute and wreak destruction in our communities and on our planet has been called into question. This is momentum that we will continue to build upon.

The outcome of this election does not change the fact that oil and gas operations are dangerous and should not be happening so close to Colorado homes, schools and drinking water. It doesn’t change the fact that the recent IPCC report tells us that we must stay below 1.5C if we are to protect a planet capable of sustaining life as we know it – and to do that the vast majority of fossil fuels must stay in the ground and we must transition to 100% renewable energy by 2035.

We will not stop until our neighborhoods, our planet, and our children’s futures are safe from fossil fuel extraction and burning. Fracking companies are on their way out – they’re in debt over $200 billion and have never had 1 year of positive cash flow in aggregate in the US. Their debt-based boom will bust as investors wake up. In the meantime, we’ll continue to work together with allies to protect our communities and pressure newly elected officials to put public health and safety over profit.

Stay tuned over the next few days for next steps on fracking, and stay engaged in our other campaigns — Fossil Free PERA, moving our cities off banking with big banks funding climate disaster, promoting a just transition to 100% clean renewable energy, and more. There is much to be done, but for now, enjoy some time off. You deserve it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          -Micah Parkin, Executive Director, 350 Colorado 

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