New statewide regulations about setback distances and the plugging of abandoned wells near horizontal hydraulic fracturing operations are two issues high on the state oil and gas commission’s priority list, the organization’s head said at a natural-gas and oil regulatory meeting in Durango on Thursday.
By Emergy Cowan/Durango Herald
Increased violation enforcement and baseline water-well testing also are new focuses of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, as drilling into previously untapped shale gas and oil plays increases across the state, said Matthew Lepore, the state organization’s new director.
“Shale oil and shale gas are game-changers for energy balance in this world,” Lepore said. “But we need to approach it like we have one shot at this to do it right.”
The commission is the furthest ahead in work to create revised setback distances for natural-gas and oil wells. A stakeholder group that includes representatives from industry, an environmental group, local government and state government has met for the last seven months about the issue. MORE …