Fracking Earthquakes Bill Passes First Hurdle

A bill that would hold oil and gas drillers liable for causing earthquakes passed a Democratic-controlled House committee Thursday.

The measure would allow home owners to sue over property damage from earthquakes caused by hydraulic fracturing. That’s the process when water, sand and chemicals are blasted into the ground to free up oil and gas.

State Rep. Joe Salazar, D-Thornton, who sponsored the legislation, says it's response to concerns over fracking operations that are moving closer to more populated areas.

"For so many people, that’s what they have, in terms of the wealth that they have worked for, is their property," he said.

Oil and gas industry groups say fracking is safe and oppose the bill, which faces slim odds in the Republican-controlled Senate.