Colorado gas and oil regulators sorry after internal email mocks oil companies


DENVER |  The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has apologized after employees inadvertently sent an email that ridiculed some companies the state agency regulates.

The email was sent Sunday as the agency was testing a new e-filing system. It was sent to hundreds of oil and gas workers across the state, KCNC-TV reported Thursday.

The message referred to the state’s oil companies as “Snake Oil Inc.,” “Bad Oil and Gas,” “Here We Go Again” and “Acme Company.” The agency’s email named one of the company’s law firms as “Blah Blah Blah” and its case number as “666.”

A follow up message from the agency said that “the emails were sent in error.”

“This is completely unacceptable,” Gov. Jared Polis said in a statement Thursday. “Whether you agree with everything the oil and gas industry does or not, in Colorado we treat everyone with honor, respect and professionalism. I have confidence in Chair Robbins and Director Murphy’s leadership and know that they will be taking this opportunity to make sure all employees at COGCC understand their responsibility to the oil and gas industry and its workers.”

A spokesperson for the state agency apologized in a statement Wednesday, saying that the employees involved in the email have been rebuked.

“The inadvertent emails reveal what the COGCC really thinks of the industry that powers every other industry in Colorado, America and the world,” said Coloradans for Responsible Energy Development spokesperson Laurie Cipriano. “Colorado’s energy industry powers renewable energy, too, including electric cars, wind turbines and solar facilities.

“We agree with Governor Polis that the emails were unacceptable. Government agencies and commissions should treat its citizens with respect,” Cipriano said. “In Colorado, we expect professionalism and objectivity and ask this commission to work with all stakeholders to protect people, not demean them. We hope the commission will take the necessary steps to ensure the agency has a positive and respectful culture.”