Oil and Gas Conservation Commission met on April 21st at in the Council Chambers,
Those present were:
Stephen Sonnenberg Chair
Brian Cree Vice Chair
Tom Ann Casey Commissioner
Michael Klish Commissioner
Peter Mueller Commissioner
Tom Reagan Commissioner
Lynn Shook Commissioner
Carol Harmon Assistant Attorney General
Richard Griebling Director
Brian Macke Deputy Director
Patricia Beaver Hearings Manager
Commission unanimously approved the minutes from the
Executive Director’s Report: There was no report.
Director’s Report: Director Griebling provided a written report
and discussed the following: The Southeast Colorado Raton Basin report will be
on the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission (“COGCC”) website and
published in the Oil & Gas Journal. A
presentation on the report will be made to the Commissioners in August. The backlog of statistics entry for
production reports is getting caught up, thanks to COGCC staff
Assistant Attorney General’s Report: AAG Harmon provided the Commissioners with a litigation memo. There was no additional report.
Commissioner Comments: Commissioner Casey suggested that a presentation from CDX on their horizontal drilling program be made at the June hearing in Cortez. Chair Sonnenberg will not be at the June hearing, so Vice Chair Cree will need to preside over the hearing. Chair Sonnenberg also announced he will not seek reappointment to the Commission.
Audience Comments: There were no comments.
Cause No. 517, Docket No. 0302-GA-01, request for a variance to allow the Kildare 42-20 Well to be located closer than 150 feet from the surface owner’s property, was continued to the June hearing pending a settlement between the parties.
Cause No. 1V, Docket No. 0304-OV-04, request to enter an Order Finding Violation finding Fredrick J. Shaffer Jr. in violation of Rule 326.b.(1) for failure to either perform a mechanical integrity test, produce, or plug and abandon the State-Pyle #1 Well located in the NW¼ SE¼ of Section 6, Township 20 South, Range 48 West 6th P.M. and the State-Pyles-Calvert #1 Well located in the SW¼ NE¼ of Section 11, Township 20 South, Range 49 West, 6th P.M. After testimony was presented by CGOCC staff engineer Dave Dillon in support of the staff recommendation to find Shaffer in violation, the matter was unanimously approved.
Cause No. 146, Docket No. 0304-GA-02, request for an order authorizing the closure
of the Leyden Underground Natural Gas Storage
Facility in the caverns of the abandoned Leyden Coal
Mine. The Commission was given a field
site tour prior to the hearing. AAG
Harmon reviewed with the Commissioners the statute governing the closure of
underground natural gas storage facilities and the conditions to be applied to
any order. Bill Uding,
Public Service Company Engineer, made a presentation on the history of the
Jean Tate, President of El Dorado Estates – Concerned about the facility being closed in an environmentally sound manner to properly protect safety. Concerned about how much data was being collected, if any. Concerned with the water around the area. Stated there are active springs in the area even during the drought and wondered what would happen to the spring flow in the area. Wants full disclosure of the information concerning the area. Provided Commissioners with a list of questions she would like answered.
David Rleisky, Homeowner – Concerned about long term protection of home values and safety. Wondered about where the water and gas would go after closure. Believes that the ground water will change with the injection and storage of water. Wants to be sure that Public Service posts financial assurance to take care of any problems to existing and future homeowners.
Anna May Doyle, has
Chris Eatherton –
Discussed a few of the wells drilled in the area, including depths and how many
homes are in the area. Has obtained leak
survey data that doesn’t cover the entire area. Believes data is being withheld
by Public Service. Wasn’t
aware that the
Mark Floyd, Project Engineer for City of
John David Duran – Concerned that injection and withdrawal of water will cause subsidence.
Procedural items were discussed as follows:
2 requests for a continuance to July by Public Service and El Dorado Estates - hearing continued to July.
1 request for a continuance to August by Union Pacific - hearing continued to July.
2 requests to visit additional site on the field tour by Protestants Union Pacific and El Dorado Estates - sites visited immediately following hearing.
Requests for Discovery by Union Pacific and El Dorado Estates - Commissioner Peter Mueller appointed Hearing Officer for the matter.
Request to set case management - Commissioner Mueller appointed Hearing Officer for the matter.
Discussion on whether Jefferson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE) should be an intervenor. Roy Laws decided JCDHE should not to intervene and participated by giving a Rule 510 Statement as follows:
Roy Laws, Environmental Engineer for JCDHE – Wants to be a part of the decision making process. Wants a subsidence assessment report and gas migration report. Wonders if the gas will cause any future problems and wants to be sure that the data properly supports the data. Believes that a monitoring system should be installed in homes and buildings such as seismic monitoring.
Upon conclusion of the hearing, the Commission reconvened at the Leyden Station for another field tour of sites requested by the Protestant to be visited. The hearing to present the technical data in this matter was continued to the July hearing. A prehearing conference was scheduled for on Tuesday, April 22 at the COGCC conference room, with Commissioner Mueller presiding as Hearing Officer.
Consent Agenda: The Commission unanimously approved all matters on the consent agenda, except the Williams matter, which included the following:
Cause No. 191, Docket No. 0304-SP-03, request for an order to vacate the 640-acre drilling and spacing unit consisting of Section 35, Township 6 South, Range 92 West, 6th P.M. for production of gas and associated hydrocarbons from the Mesaverde Formation.
Cause No. 133, Docket No. 0304-AW-04, request for an order to allow up to four (4) wells to be drilled and completed at the option of the operator on 320-acre drilling and spacing units in Section 26 and the N½ of Section 36, Township 12 North, Range 101 West, 6th P.M. for the production of gas and associated hydrocarbons from the Wasatch, Fort Union, Lance, and Lewis Formations.
Cause No. 133, Docket No. 0304-AW-05, request for an order to allow up to five (5) wells to be drilled in existing 320-acre drilling units established in Section 30, Township 12 North, Range 100 West, 6th P.M. and Section 25, Township 12 North, Range 101 West, 6th P.M. for the production of gas and associated hydrocarbons from the Wasatch, Fort Union, Lance and Lewis Formations.
Commissioner Mueller recused himself from the following matter, which was approved by the rest of the Commission: Cause Nos. 139, 440, 479, 495, 510, Docket No. 0304-AW-03, request for an order to allow additional wells to be drilled on ten (10) acre density directionally from 40-acre well sites or previously approved 20-acre well sites for certain lands in Township 6 South, Ranges 94-96 West, 6th P.M., and Township 7 South, Ranges 95 and 96 West, 6th P.M. for the production of gas and associated hydrocarbons form the Williams Fork Formation.
The meeting adjourned at , reconvened at for a second field tour and adjourned at
The Secretary was therefore authorized to issue the following orders:
Order No. 133-20, Hiawatha West Field, Moffat County: Approves the request by Wexpro Company to allow up to five (5) wells to be drilled in existing 320-acre drilling units established in Section 30, Township 12 North, Range 100 West, 6th P.M. and Section 25, Township 12 North, Range 101 West, 6th P.M. for the production of gas and associated hydrocarbons from the Wasatch, Fort Union, Lance and Lewis Formations.
Order No. 133-21, Hiawatha West Field,
Order No. 191-7, Mam Creek Field,
Order Nos. 139-38, 440-23, 479-11, 495-3, 510-8, Parachute and Grand Valley Fields, Garfield County: Approves the request by Williams Production RMT Company to allow additional wells to be drilled on ten (10) acre density directionally from 40-acre well sites or previously approved 20-acre well sites for certain lands in Township 6 South, Ranges 94-96 West, 6th P.M., and Township 7 South, Ranges 95 and 96 West, 6th P.M. for the production of gas and associated hydrocarbons form the Williams Fork Formation.
Order No. 1V-245,
Patricia C. Beaver, Secretary
Stephen Sonnenberg, Chair