Justice Rising

We are using legal action to protect communities to challenge industry permits and hold the state accountable

Our Justice Rising program

Litigates cases against the oil and gas industry and government bad actors.

Engaging in state agency rulemaking processes to challenge industry permits, hold the state accountable, and protect residents from oil and gas operations.The ultimate goal of our efforts is to stop permits, not simply to mitigate impacts.


Since the program was launched in January 2018, we have successfully held up several permits in heavily impacted communities; including Commerce City, Thornton and Broomfield. The outcome of these efforts, which have resulted in a pause or withdrawal of permits, directly impacts the lives of thousands of frontline families along Denver’s front range.

Commerce City



Fighting for Local Bans

In 2019, we also launched a ground-breaking legal effort to reinstate Longmont’s fracking ban. The ban was overturned by the Colorado Supreme Court in 2016 as being in conflict with state law. However, the law substantially changed in 2019 with the passage of SB 19-181. Now, local governments can regulate oil and gas development in a manner that is more protective and stricter than state requirements. If this case is successful, it will create a domino effect by allowing local governments across Colorado to pass stricter regulations, including moratoria or bans on oil and gas development in order to protect public health and safety.

Our legal strategies aim to challenge decades of legal precedent that favor the oil and gas industry. The passage of SB 19-181 gives our Justice Rising program the legal boost needed to protect our environment and communities from this abusive industry.

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