11:02am

Mon August 1, 2011
Business

Western Oil and Gas Leaders Begin Meeting in Denver

Oil and gas industry officials and policymakers begin a four day meeting in Denver today focusing on energy development and the Rocky Mountain West’s role in it.

Dubbed: the Mission Possible – the Rocky Mountain Energy Epicenter Conference promises to "engage the public to ensure there’s social and political support to bring the opportunities of a lifetime to the market."

Grandiose statements aside, the three-day event does have an impressive roster of guests – including current Governor Hickenlooper, former governors Ritter and Owens, and the former head of Shell Oil.  A number of sessions are devoted to touting the role that natural gas will play in the country’s energy future, and on several new natural gas “plays” in Colorado and beyond that are now on the table thanks to new technologies.

But there are also several more strategy-type sessions, such as one that looks at how many states and green-minded lawmakers are now championing cleaner-burning natural gas as an alternative to coal, while at the same time, according to industry representatives, putting up barriers that make it hard to get that gas out of the ground. 

The conference sponsored by the Colorado Oil and Gas Association runs through Thursday at the Colorado Convention Center.  Find a link to the agenda here