Energy gives back

Dear Editor:For Northwest Colorado residents, last week brought excitement and anticipation building up to a well-earned holiday weekend. The holiday brought excitement for the West Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association too, but for a different reason. As reported by last week, local governments and schools received checks for more than $54 million from the energy sector. In fact, Rio Blanco County received more than $7.6 million. Not a bad way to wind down the summer season. As a result, county roads will be smoother, city parks will be greener and schools more effective in creating the next generation of job creators for our communities.Throughout the year our organization’s mission is to highlight the jobs we create, emphasize the clean energy we produce and spotlight the billions of dollars invested locally each year by our member companies. But seldom are we more proud than when local governments receive direct cash resulting from energy activity. For most of us, numbers in the billions are hard to conceptualize. But it is true the natural gas and oil industry provides more than $24 billion to Colorado’s economy each year. The monies received before Labor Day were just a small fraction of that total economic contribution. As local governments and schools deposited these dollars into their bank accounts, the 6,000 local employees represented by our organization enjoyed the holiday weekend that much more knowing the work they do in the energy business benefits and supports the local communities who support them too.David LudlamExecutive DirectorWest Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association