Oil & Gas Symposium II set for Hayden

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What: Northwest Colorado Oil & Gas Symposium II

When: 5 p.m. March 14

Where: Hayden High School auditorium, 495 W. Jefferson.

Cost: $20

— The deadline to register is March 9. For more information, call 879-4370.

Oil and natural gas development can be a complicated topic.

And as Northwest Colorado prepares for a potential energy boom, two Yampa Valley organizations are hosting a second symposium to discuss how minerals may affect Moffat and Routt counties.

Yampa Valley Data Partners, together with the Community Agriculture Alliance, hosted the first Northwest Colorado Oil & Gas Symposium in September 2011 in Hayden, which was attended by more than 150 people.

The second event is slated for 5 p.m. March 14 at the Hayden High School auditorium, 495 W. Jefferson.

“It’s such a big and complex subject,” said Kate Nowak, executive director of Yampa Valley Data Partners. “We wanted to provide nonbiased education so people can get more information on what the oil and gas boom might look like in our backyard.”

Last time around YVDP and CAA invited a panel of six guest speakers. Next month there will be five.

“We went with one less speaker to allow more time for questions,” Nowak said. “People really enjoyed the (question-and-answer) session last time.”

Scheduled speakers to date include John Lamb, of Steamboat Energy Consultants; Chad Phillips, of Routt County Planning; and Steamboat Springs attorney Ralph Cantafio.

YVDP and CAA also are in the process of trying to arrange an economist and an environmental representative for the event.

Lamb is expected to discuss the process of oil and natural gas development, Nowak said. Cantafio will address how lease transfers among companies can affect landowners.

In addition, Cantafio said he may talk about a 32-page paper he co-authored about hydraulic fracturing.

“I’ve presented on this issue several times now and it’s become clear to me, from the questions I’ve been asked, that people don’t really understand the process of fracking,” Cantafio said. “I scratched my head and pondered why that might be and it became pretty obvious that there are two pretty significant bodies of information — either super, highly-technical industry data or, on the other side, a ton of incomplete information either from environmental groups or industry that really doesn’t provide a true representation of the scientific issue.”

The 32-page paper is available online at www.cantafiolaw.com.

Tickets for the Northwest Colorado Oil & Gas Symposium are $20. The cost includes a light dinner.

The registration deadline is March 9.

Nowak recommends anyone interested in attending sign up as soon as possible.

“We sold out early when we did this in September,” she said. “Even though we have a bigger venue, I imagine a lot of people are going to want to attend.”

For more information, call the CAA at 879-4370.

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