More than a 1,000 people attended Frack Free Colorado, a star-studded concert and rally in Denver, Co this Tuesday afternoon to draw attention to the dangers of fracking in the state. The event, which took place across from the State Capitol, was sponsored by a coalition of businesses, non-profits, environmental leaders, and celebrities, including Daryl Hannah, The Wallflowers' Jakob Dylan, Mariel Hemingway, race car driver and environmentalist, Leilani Munter, and acclaimed author and ecologist, Sandra Steingraber.
Featured prominently in the Emmy Award winning documentary, Gasland, the state of Colorado has 48,000 fracked wells, with no end in sight. According to the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission, there are more than 5,000 documented spills of toxic fracking water, many of which have contaminated rivers and drinking water sources. Hundreds of wells sit next to schools, including an elementary school in Erie, CO, were children must study with a noisy, dusty, toxin filled gas well 350 feet away.
Organizers called on Governor John Hickenlooper, to develop a concrete plan to move the state away from natural gas and other dirty extractive industries and toward a truly renewable energy economy as rapidly as possible. Earlier this year the U.S. Department of Interior named Colorado as a prime spot for the development of solar energy and Renewable Energy World states that with an estimated six million acres of windy lands, Colorado ranks 11th in the United States in wind energy potential.
Actor Daryl Hannah noted that the U.S., as a whole, has enough solar and wind energy to power our economy 100 times over and said, "In these times of crisis, we must stand up for each other and our life support systems by doing all we can to speak up for true energy independence and energy security with regionally-based, clean renewable."