“Ridiculously high levels of NMHCs…”

(scroll to bottom for detailed ppts. from NOAA)

“…especially the alkanes”  Were the exact words published regarding the air in Erie, CO in a NOAA/Appalachian State University report published Sept. 2, 2011 and conducted Feb-Mar 2011.

We are not scientists, we are parents; and we had no idea what we would find when we sent a simple email asking if any air testing had been done in our community related to oil and gas operations. As with all information that comes our way, we reached out to unbiased experts to help us understand.

What does it mean to live in a community with butane and propane levels “ridiculously” high? What does this mean to children’s health? Maybe rather than lighting our water on fire, we can light our air? That’s probably a stretch… Does is mean asthma? That’s the most obvious potential we presume…  Initial interpretation of this report has been shared with us and we wanted to share this with you:

“Propane and butane are listed on OSHA’s Extremely Hazardous Substances list, mostly due to flammability. Benzene is a known human carcinogen.  Overall these and other volatile hydrocarbons measured in local air can cause respiratory irritation. They can be transformed by sunlight into other, more harmful chemicals, principally ozone, and perhaps carcinogens. The potential impact to children’s health is difficult to gauge but deserves further consideration.” Sonya Lunder, EWG Senior Analyst 

(Sonya holds a Masters of Public Health in environmental health sciences from UC-Berkeley . Prior to joining EWG in 2002, Sonya managed a community health intervention at a Superfund site, and worked for California's Environmental Health Investigations Branch.  Sonya will be speaking at Empowering Erie on March 1).

We look forward to learning more about what these findings do or do not mean.  However, the lack of health and impact studies related to natural gas operations are cause for concern alone.  View ER interview on Ch. 7 Here.

We give a special thanks to Steve Brown from NOAA for coming and presenting this information.

NOAA Summaries Below:


Gilman Report

Posted in Erie, Health, In the News | Tagged , , ,

Erie Rising Spotlighted at the Boulder International Film Festival

One Action-One Boulder is delighted to be spotlighting the work Erie Rising at the Boulder International Film Festival’s screening of Surviving Progress.
The film clarifies the connection between environmental degradation and global inequality in relation to the over consumption that is associated with our idea of progress.   The film asks, “As pressure on the world’s resources accelerates and financial elites bankrupts nations, can our globally entwined civilization escape a final, catastrophic progress trap?” Surviving Progress is produced by Martin Scorsese and interviewees include Jane Goodall, Stephen Hawking, and Margaret Atwood. Surviving Progress is inspired by Ronald Wright’s best seller A Short History of Progress. View the trailer here.

The environmental message of the film is dire: without a significant shift in the way we do the business of the country and our lives, the future is not bright. One Action-One Boulder is excited to have Erie Rising attend as an organization that the audience can join in order to take a significant action to protect our environment, our health, our children and our democracy.

Surviving Progress
Friday, Feb 17, 7:30pm 
First United Methodist Church
1421 Spruce St. Boulder
Erie Rising will stay after the film for a discussion with 4 other local environmental justice organizations and community members to talk about the film, and actions the Boulder community can take to support the earth and global equality. See you there! For more information on this event go to One Action-One Boulder.
One Action – One Boulder is a year-long arts inspired collaborative conversation and community action project designed to create a stronger, more equitable Boulder. It encourages each of us to learn about local and national histories of racial and economic injustice and take a significant action in 2012 toward a more equitable future.
Posted in In the News | Tagged

Stripping Local Control! ALL HANDS ON DECK!

ALL HANDS ON DECK – it’s absolutely essential to have masses of people present at the hearing as well as extensive submissions to the committee in letters, phone calls, emails. STARTING TODAY!

Bill Title: Preemption of Local Control Over Oil and Gas; Senate Bill 088

Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012 

Capitol Building, Senate Committee, Room 353

Denver, CO

Est. time: 9:15 and 9:45




Posted in Uncategorized

Earth Guardians’ (Kids) Organization is Coming to Support our Kids!

We are so happy when Earth Guardians asked to partner with Erie Rising!

Check out this out!  Earth Guardians is run by CHILDREN!  Yes, that is correct, children!  They saw the issues going on here in Erie and asked to come and partner with and support our kids.

Earth Guardian’s Mission:  Earth Guardian Youth are committed to standing up for their future and the kind of Earth that they and future generations will inherit. They take their concerns about issues that will directly affect them and their communities into action by becoming educated on the issues and creating action plans to address these issues. They speak in City Council, at County Commissioners meetings, rallies, community events and schools to build awareness and a support base to assist in addressing these problems. They want the adults that are making decisions to realize that it is their responsibility to make healthy decisions on behalf of the children that will inherit the planet.

When: Tuesday, January 31 4:45-5:30
Where: Erie Community Library
Who: Bring your kids out to meet the Earth Guardian Kids and be part of making a video with the Earth Guardians team of kids! Kids of ALL ages welcome!
Questions? Contact info@erierising.com
Posted in Erie, In the News, News, Our Kids, Uncategorized

Erie Moms Credited for Fracking Awareness

“Moms Step Up To Take On Natural Gas Fracking”

We are so honored to be featured by Healthy Child Healthy World regarding the awareness our group is bringing to the Town of Erie and on a national level; for concerns with natural gas operations and mining using hydraulic fracturing which appear as if they may be affecting our childrens’  health.

With this, the situation at hand is now quite surreal.  I have referenced Healthy Child Healthy World on a professional level for years.  I have always turned to them for a trusted resource to give to other families and new parents. Now, I find myself on the other end of the spectrum.  A year ago when I began to investigate natural gas operations I never would have guessed that I would be in the place I find myself tonight.

In my testimony to the EPA September 2011, I ended with this…

“When my boys grow older, I pray they are healthy.  I want them to look back knowing that we did all we could, we were not silenced or naive.  We stood up and voiced our rights to protect ourselves and others.  We did what needed to be done, no matter how inconvenient it may have been. Despite the intimidation of big corporate funding, economics and the argument that we can’t make a difference because we’re too small.  And most of all, because I want them to know that I love them, and that I did all I could to protect them and keep them healthy.  I will never let them look back and ask me why not?  This is important, and I am trusting in you to help make a difference where my arms cannot reach far enough to protect them.”

With this, I am grateful to the team of mothers who have joined me, encouraged me to stay on course, held my hand and allowed me to cry, and for the people who are beginning to listen to us.

Peace and Goodnight.


Posted in Uncategorized

Read with Caution: Lisa Bracken and “Journey of the Forsaken”

Caution… read at your own risk!  This is in Colorado, so we do not have the luxury to write this off as someplace far far away…

Lisa Bracken takes us on a journey like no other.  Her dry sense of humor can make you nauseous while you read of her accounts, trials and bravery.

Lisa Bracken “This website is my version of a reality show that would simply be too hot for many networks to handle. Hardly anyone will take on this powerful industry, let alone reign it in. Because of it’s unfathomable influence, it is probably one of the most corruptible and corrosive elements infiltrating the regulatory environment. We are without resources, but we are not – yet, anyway – without voice. Here, as events have unfolded, is where you can track the nitty gritty for yourself. We may be unable to curtail this industry’s devastation, but we do hope to expose it.”



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Open Evaporation Pits in Grandview & Erie Commons! Did you know???

We are still speechless from what was brought to our attention last week at the BOT meeting. Mr. Shane Davis from The Sierra Club provided us with some insightful information regarding open evaporation pits in Erie.  We were unaware that Encana Oil & Gas had been using such pits especially right next to homes, schools and playgrounds. Although the pits are no longer used and have since been back-filled, the reality of their existence has left us to wonder what else we may not be aware of and to possibly begin questioning health concerns of families in the area.

To learn more about open evaporation pits, please visit these sites:

US Fish & Wildlife Service

Peaceful Council

Report Marcellus Shale 2011

Posted in Encana, Erie, Health, Pits | Tagged , ,