Environmentalists protested Sunday outside the home of a government official they believed to be a fossil fuel supporter, not realizing that the official had long since moved to a different residence.
Anti-fracking activists in Colorado demonstrated outside a home in Boulder where they thought Boulder County Commissioner Elise Jones lives. But unfortunately for the activists, Jones hasn’t lived in the house for nearly five years.
The organization, which identified itself as Boulder County Protectors, said in a news release the day of the rally that about 50 community members had marched “on a home of politically compromised Boulder County commissioner Elise Jones asking her to resign.”
“Happily, no one was at home, but as you might imagine, the current residents were very confused when they came home to find an oil drum in the driveway and threatening chalk messages drawn up and down the sidewalk and the steps to the house,” Jones wrote in an email Sunday night. “I went over to apologize and to try and clean everything up.”
Activists acknowledged the mistake later that day. Cliff Willmeng, of East Boulder County United, said in a press statement that the group thought Jones lived at the address because she is listed in public records as one of the owners.
“[If] community members mistake an address, we can always go back and fix it,: he added, but if officials support the oil and gas industry, then it could mean, “homes blow up and people die.”
Colorado’s anti-fracking groups are a hearty bunch. They’ve conducted several odd-ball events and rallies, most of them landing with a thud in terms of pushing the state away from natural gas.
Protesters from a group called Colorado Community Rights Network crashed a Gov. John Hickenlooper book singing event last year. They chanted slogans such as, “We the people of Colorado hold you in contempt,” “We are not going away,” and “No fracking way” at full volume while parading around the book event at the First Congregational Church in Boulder, Colo.
They were likely reacting to passages in Hickenlooper’s book explaining the Democratic governor’s position on natural gas. “Based on experience and science, I recognized that fracking was one of our very best and safest extraction techniques,” he wrote in one section.
Hickenlooper appeared during the interruption. He jumped on the church’s piano to play a little ditty while the activists trotted around behind him. He was finally able to continue his speech more than an hour later, accompanied by two security guards in addition to the four police officers at the church.
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