About Matthew Sura
REPRESENTING LANDOWNERS, MINERAL OWNERS, NEIGHBORHOODS AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS SINCE 2011
Helping Clients and Seeking Justice
Matt Sura is an oil and gas attorney who specializes in the representation of landowners, mineral owners, and local governments.
Most oil and gas attorneys work for the oil and gas industry. Matt became an attorney so he could better assist families, communities and local governments in their negotiations and legal disputes with the oil and gas industry.
From 1996-2008 Matt worked with Western Colorado Alliance – a non-profit organization based in Grand Junction, Colorado. During his time on the Western Slope, Matt worked with rural residents and communities that were struggling with oil and gas development that was occurring on their land and throughout the region.
As a community organizer, Matt worked for ten years to assist landowners and communities in their struggles with the oil and gas industry. The western slope boom in gas drilling during the early 2000s was unprecedented. At one time there were over 50 active drilling rigs in Garfield County. The impacts in Garfield County were devastating—to the land, to wildlife, to the landowners, and to the communities living among the gas wells.
For years, Matt worked with communities to try to reform state laws and the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC). It was that experience that led him to attend law school to help affected communities pass and enforce stronger environmental and public health and safety laws. Matt represented communities and environmental organizations in every major oil and gas rulemaking since 2008.
In 2014, Matt was selected to represent local governments and environmental interests on the “Governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force” that was charged with addressing large scale oil and gas development that was occurring on the front range. Matt continued to work for reform on behalf of conservation groups, impacted communities and local governments. Finally, in 2019, the state legislature passed Senate Bill 19-181 that brought true reform to the way oil and gas is developed within the state of Colorado.
With the passage of Senate Bill 19-181, local governments finally have the power to regulate the oil and gas industry like any other industry. Local governments now have the clear ability to use their zoning authority and land use powers to determine where and how oil and gas can occur in order to protect public health, safety, welfare and the environment and adjacent land uses.
Senate Bill 19-181 also changed the mission of the COGCC to clarify that its primary objective is to protect public health, safety, welfare, and the environment. Throughout the 2020 COGCC “Mission Change” rulemaking, Matt represented numerous local governments, school districts, water providers, and non-profit conservation and community organizations fighting for greater public health and environmental protections.
With the passage of the new state rules, Colorado now has far stronger rules that allow for greater public participation in permitting decisions; increased setbacks from homes, schools and public open spaces; increased public health protections; and greater environmental protections for air quality, water quality, and wildlife. Matt understands the state oil and gas rules because he helped write them and pushed for their adoption.
At the LAW OFFICE OF MATTHEW SURA, we believe hiring an attorney should feel like lifting a tremendous burden from your shoulders. We take on your problems and proactively resolve them as if they were our own. We invite you to contact our office to determine if we can be of assistance to you.