(Aug. 7) – A new law to improve reporting requirements for oil spills in Colorado went into effect today.

HB13-1278, sponsored by Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush (D-Steamboat Springs), received bipartisan support after an inclusive stakeholder process with input from environmental groups, the oil and gas industry, state agencies and local government groups.

The new law sets a one-barrel threshold for required reporting of any oil spill. The previous threshold was five barrels. The spill must be reported within 24 hours to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission and the local jurisdiction responsible for emergency response.

“Unreported spills can wreak havoc on our rivers, streams, irrigation ditches and groundwater,” Rep. Mitsch Bush said. “This modest tightening of the rules is designed to ensure that when there’s an incident, it receives prompt attention before pollutants reach waterways.”

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