City of Fort Collins v. Colo. Oil and Gas Ass’n

The citizens of home-rule city Fort Collins voted in favor of a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing and the storage of its waste products within city limits. The Colorado Oil and Gas Association (the Association), an industry organization, sued Fort Collins and requested: (1) a declaratory judgment declaring that the Oil and Gas Conservation Act, and the rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, preempted Fort Collins’s fracking moratorium; and (2) a permanent injunction enjoining the enforcement of the moratorium. The Association subsequently moved for summary judgment on its declaratory judgment claim, and Fort Collins filed a cross-motion for summary judgment, asking the district court to find that the moratorium was not preempted by state law. The Supreme Court concluded that "fracking is a matter of mixed state and local concern," Fort Collins’s fracking moratorium was subject to preemption by state law. Furthermore, the Court concluded that Fort Collins’s five-year moratorium on fracking and the storage of fracking waste operationally conflicted with the effectuation of state law. Accordingly, the Court held that the moratorium was preempted by state law and was, therefore, invalid and unenforceable. The district court’s order was affirmed, and the matter remanded for further proceedings. View "City of Fort Collins v. Colo. Oil and Gas Ass'n" on Justia Law