Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission http://wyomingpublicmedia.org en Laramie County Sees Surge In Oil And Gas Development http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/laramie-county-sees-surge-oil-and-gas-development <p>For years, southeastern Wyoming has been expecting an oil boom that’s never arrived. Just across the border in Colorado, drilling has reached breakneck pace, but Wyoming has been relatively quiet -- until now. The discovery of a new, more promising oil reserve has led to a surge of interest in oil and gas development in Laramie County over the last few months.</p><p>In May of 2013, oil and gas companies applied for nine permits to drill in Laramie County. In May of 2014, companies applied for 132.</p> Fri, 13 Jun 2014 23:08:01 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 59815 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Laramie County Sees Surge In Oil And Gas Development State Begins Plugging Orphaned Wells http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/state-begins-plugging-orphaned-wells <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">The state has started plugging some of the thousand-plus orphaned wells in the Powder River Basin.&nbsp;The wells are relics of the coal-bed methane bust, when many companies went bankrupt and walked away without closing their wells. The state has taken on responsibility for plugging them, using a combination of revoked bonds and funds from a production tax.</span></p> Fri, 13 Jun 2014 21:11:25 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 59796 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org State Begins Plugging Orphaned Wells Oil And Gas Commission Denies Citizen Rulemaking Petition http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/oil-and-gas-commission-denies-citizen-rulemaking-petition <p></p> Tue, 13 May 2014 22:17:54 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 58245 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Oil And Gas Commission Denies Citizen Rulemaking Petition Commissioners Appoint New Oil And Gas Supervisor http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/commissioners-appoint-new-oil-and-gas-supervisor <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has a new permanent supervisor. Mark Watson received a unanimous vote from the commissioners.</span></p> Tue, 13 May 2014 19:16:53 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 58223 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Commissioners Appoint New Oil And Gas Supervisor Oil And Gas Regulation Review Kicks Off http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/oil-and-gas-regulation-review-kicks <p>The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is planning to review several controversial issues, including flaring, well-setbacks and bonding, starting in March.<br /><br />Those topics have come up a lot in recent years, with the boom in drilling. The Powder River Basin Resource Council <a href="http://www.powderriverbasin.org/assets/WOGCC-petition-for-rulemaking.pdf" target="_blank">asked the Commission</a> to address them last year, and so have several residents in recent opinion pieces in the Casper Star-Tribune.<br /> Sat, 01 Mar 2014 00:53:07 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 54713 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Oil And Gas Regulation Review Kicks Off Wyoming Doesn’t Often Fine Industry For Spills http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/wyoming-doesn-t-often-fine-industry-spills <p>Wyoming regulators recorded hundreds of spills by the oil and gas industry last year, but issued just a handful of fines. As Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce reports, that’s actually not unusual.<br /><br />STEPHANIE JOYCE: ‘Genie McMullan knows when there’s been an oil spill from the production wells on her goat farm in the Big Horn Basin.<br /><br />'GENIE McMULLAN: When there’s a spill there’s a sharp smell, it’s a burning smell to my senses, my nose, my eyes, my lungs.<br /> Sat, 18 Jan 2014 00:02:23 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 52771 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Wyoming Doesn’t Often Fine Industry For Spills Oil and gas could see new setback rules http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/oil-and-gas-could-see-new-setback-rules <p>The head of the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission says his agency will consider changing setback rules. Those are the rules that govern how far away oil and gas operations, such as wells, have to be from things like houses.</p><p>Grant Black spoke at a public meeting in Douglas last night. He says currently, the setback rule is the same, regardless of whether you’re dealing with a home or something else. But he says that could change.</p> Thu, 16 Jan 2014 14:56:27 +0000 Willow Belden 52692 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Oil and gas could see new setback rules Oil and Gas Commission records lots of spills, but no fines in 2013 http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/oil-and-gas-commission-records-lots-spills-no-fines-2013 <p></p> Fri, 03 Jan 2014 01:17:50 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 52121 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Oil and Gas Commission records lots of spills, but no fines in 2013 Abandoned well plugging plan moves forward http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/abandoned-well-plugging-plan-moves-forward <p>The legislature’s Joint Minerals Committee is mostly onboard with a new plan to plug abandoned oil and gas wells in the state. The committee discussed the Governor’s plan at a meeting on Thursday. Senator Chris Rothfuss says while the committee had questions about some of the details, like the cost and timeline, there was a general agreement that the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission should move forward with the plugging.</p> Mon, 16 Dec 2013 13:57:48 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 51356 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Abandoned well plugging plan moves forward Governor releases plan for plugging abandoned oil and gas wells http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/governor-releases-plan-plugging-abandoned-oil-and-gas-wells <div style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: normal;"><p>According to new estimates from the Governor’s office, plugging abandoned oil and gas wells in Wyoming could cost anywhere from $8 to $32 million.</p><p>The smaller figure takes into account only wells that the state knows are abandoned. The larger one includes wells owned by bankrupt methane farming company Luca Technologies and the 2300 wells the state considers ‘at risk’ for abandonment.</p> Tue, 10 Dec 2013 22:29:36 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 51111 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Governor releases plan for plugging abandoned oil and gas wells Baseline water testing rule draws criticism from all sides http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/baseline-water-testing-rule-draws-criticism-all-sides <p></p><p>Opinion is sharply divided on a proposed rule that would require water testing at oil and gas wells before and after drilling.<br /><br /><br />The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has been taking public comment on the rule since August. Two dozen groups and individuals submitted written comments, and a handful spoke at a public hearing in Casper on Tuesday.<br /><br /><br />Bob LeResche is vice-chair of the Powder River Basin Resource Council, a group that represents landowners. He says as they stand, the rules have no teeth.<br />&nbsp;</p> Wed, 16 Oct 2013 00:11:36 +0000 Stephanie Joyce 48430 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Baseline water testing rule draws criticism from all sides Oil & gas regulators look at protecting state from bad actors http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/oil-gas-regulators-look-protecting-state-bad-actors <p>Oil and gas operators need more insurance, or bonding. That&rsquo;s what the leaders of several state agencies told the legislature&rsquo;s Minerals Committee at a meeting today. They said there&rsquo;s a gap in how much money is available and how much is needed to deal with abandoned oil and gas wells. The question is: where will that money come from?</p><p></p><p>Oil and Gas Commission Supervisor, Grant Black, says the bonding structure can be changed to avoid similar problems in the future.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> Fri, 27 Sep 2013 00:44:33 +0000 Irina Zhorov 47549 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Oil & gas regulators look at protecting state from bad actors Natural gas flaring in state improving, but still an issue http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/natural-gas-flaring-state-improving-still-issue <p>There are fewer companies flaring off natural gas today than there were six months ago. In March, the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission had 65 flaring authorizations. &nbsp;Members of the Legislatures Minerals Committee were told by Commission Supervisor Grant Black that now there is about half that number. He also said that companies generally request flaring permits when a compressor is down or there is no pipeline to get the gas to market and they&rsquo;re seeing much less of the latter.</p> Fri, 27 Sep 2013 00:12:33 +0000 Irina Zhorov 47547 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Natural gas flaring in state improving, but still an issue WY initiates its Pavillion investigation http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/wy-initiates-its-pavillion-investigation <p>As the state initiates its investigation of water quality issues in Pavillion, two state agencies plan to review existing data before deciding how to proceed. The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission and the Department of Environmental Quality will look at the well bore integrity of about 50 oil and gas wells within a quarter mile of 14 domestic water wells that had at least one pollutant at levels above drinking water standards.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 05 Aug 2013 13:15:43 +0000 Irina Zhorov 44828 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org WY initiates its Pavillion investigation Groundwater testing draft rules get support, feedback http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/groundwater-testing-draft-rules-get-support-feedback <p>Several groups submitted comments Thursday on the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission’s draft rule for groundwater testing in the state. The rule would require that energy companies test groundwater quality before and after oil and gas drilling.</p><p>Richard Garrett is a policy analyst with the Wyoming Outdoor Council, one of the groups that submitted comments. He says his group and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) made recommendations that they hope will close any potential loopholes in the law.</p> Fri, 12 Jul 2013 23:31:27 +0000 Chelsea Biondolillo 43659 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Groundwater testing draft rules get support, feedback Wyoming’s Oil and Gas Supervisor discusses issues from flaring to fracking http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/wyoming-s-oil-and-gas-supervisor-discusses-issues-flaring-fracking <p>Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck spoke with the new supervisor of the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, Grant Black.&nbsp; Since he started the job a few weeks ago, Black has been dealing with issues ranging from the flaring of natural gas to water contamination.&nbsp; He says the flaring issue is interesting.</p> Fri, 07 Jun 2013 22:27:30 +0000 Bob Beck 41985 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Wyoming’s Oil and Gas Supervisor discusses issues from flaring to fracking Groups want Oil and Gas Conservation Commission to address development issues. http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/groups-want-oil-and-gas-conservation-commission-address-development-issues <p>A coalition of Wyoming groups has filed a rulemaking petition to the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission to address oil and gas development in the state.</p><p>The petition focuses on three main issues: increasing the setback of drilling rigs from homes, schools and businesses, adequate enforcement in the case of accidents and spills…and reducing the practice of flaring. Powder River Basin Resource Council’s Jill Morrison says flaring has been a recognized problem for some time.</p> Wed, 22 May 2013 12:12:40 +0000 Irina Zhorov 41139 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Groups want Oil and Gas Conservation Commission to address development issues. Technical and long-term questions remain about Encana’s aquifer exemption request http://wyomingpublicmedia.org/post/technical-and-long-term-questions-remain-about-encana-s-aquifer-exemption-request <p>The Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission recently okayed an aquifer exemption that would permit Encana Oil and Gas to pump waste water from their oil and gas projects in the Moneta Divide into the Madison Aquifer, about 60 miles outside of Casper. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that the exemption isn’t exactly a rarity, but it does bring up some big questions.</p> Fri, 19 Apr 2013 21:53:46 +0000 Irina Zhorov 39576 at http://wyomingpublicmedia.org Technical and long-term questions remain about Encana’s aquifer exemption request