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Dear Editor:

Fracking our wilderness and agricultural watersheds will contaminate our ecosystems, similar to the ancient practice of the sowing of salt. Hundreds of proposed fracking sites litter the headwaters of the North Fork of the Gunnison River, which supplies water to some of Colorado's most productive agricultural lands. Fracking spills, leaks and dumps of fracking produced water are unavoidable. Sodium chloride or brine is a major component of spilled and leaked produced water -- salt content is often several times saltier than seawater. Produced water may also contain toxic fracking chemicals and potentially toxic agents that occur naturally in the rock formation, including radioactive isotopes, organic compounds (such as benzene), ions (such as bromide, calcium, and chloride), and metals (such as cadmium, lead, and mercury). There is no effective technology for removing frack brine salt from soil.

David Ludlam and the West Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association continue to demonstrate a lack of understanding and respect for agriculture and the food we eat and water we drink. Frackers' major financial contributions have been to politicians to include sensitive and inappropriate parcels of land for fracking. Fracking must not be allowed in our sensitive watersheds if we are to prevent the long term devastation of the agricultural ecosystems, similar to the ancient practice of sowing salt on conquered cities to curse their habitation. No amount of money can restore agricultural lands once they have been saturated with produced frack water. The West Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association assurances lack credibility!

Lawrence Herbert
Paonia

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