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Fracking Protesters Wear Face Masks During Oil & Gas Meeting

DENVER (CBS4)- Dozens of people concerned about the impact of fracking took their message to state regulators on Monday. Some even wore face masks to to the Colorado Oil And Gas Conservation Commission to protest fracking near homes.

They want the commission and Gov. John Hickenlooper to do something about fracking near homes and encroaching on neighborhoods, specifically to curb drilling.

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Several protesters wore medical face masks with messages written on them like "Stop Fracking Us."

They hoped to make a statement about toxic air they say their families breathe every day as a result of fracking.

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COGCC heard testimony from residents along the Front Range on how fracking has exposed them to hazardous toxins.

One of the most powerful comments during the meeting wasn't made at the podium. During the testimony one commissioner asked a woman who was quietly holding a photo of homes right next to a fracking well to put away the photo.

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She refused and told him, "We have to look at this every day. Why can't you?"

The meeting comes amid concerns about proposed construction of dozens of drilling sites near homes and schools in Broomfield, Boulder, Erie, Greeley, Longmont and Thornton.

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This year, the American Lung Association gave 10 counties on the Front Range a failing grade on their clean air report. Weld County, which already has more than 23,000 wells, received an 'F.'

"Fracking is in my neighborhood. It's near my backyard, it's near my children's favorite playground. Which I don't take them to much anymore because their asthma has gotten worse in the last few years," said Weld County resident Megan Meyer.

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"Many of the current or upcoming permit applications are simply not consistent with public safety. Putting dangerous industrial operations in the middle of neighborhoods never will be consistent with public safety," said Rep. Mike Foote, a Democrat representing Boulder County, including Louisville, Lafayette, and Longmont.

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