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Colorado Oil & Gas Ass'n v. City of Lafayette, Colorado

ELR Citation: 44 ELR 20206
Nos. 3CV31746, (Colo. Dist. Ct., 09/02/2014)

A Colorado court held that the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Act preempts a city's ban on all oil and gas extraction and related activities within the city's boundaries. The court held that the operational conflict in this case was "obvious and patent" on its face. There is no way to harmonize the city's drilling ban with the stated goals of the Oil and Gas Conservation Act. The state interest in production, prevention of waste, and protection of correlative rights on the one hand, and the city's interest in banning drilling on the other, present mutually exclusive positions. Because there is no common ground upon which to craft a means to harmonize the state and local interest, the conflict in this case is an irreconcilable one. The court, therefore, overturned the ban.