The requested resource (/media/ksut/header/pb/header.html) is not available
Last updated 9:33PM ET
December 11, 2017
KSUT Regional
KSUT Regional
Gas Seep Study Funding Moves Ahead
(2007-04-26)
(ksut) - HOST LEAD: A bill that would provide funding for a multi million dollar study of coalbed methane gas leaks in Archuletta and La Plata Counties is moving forward in Denver.
KSUT's Victor Locke reports.

VICTOR: The bill sponsored by Hesperus Democrat State Senator Jim Isgar and Republican Durango Representative Ellen Roberts.
It would fund a Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission program to monitor and mitigate seepage of methane gas near the Fruitland outcrop.
The outcrop is where coal, holding the gas, nears the surface in southeast La Plata and Southwest Archuleta Counties.
Gas seeps around the outcrop have caused numerous environmental concerns, including contaminated water wells, vegegation kills, pollution, explosion and threats of coal seam fires.
It's unclear if the seeps are natural, or the result of other factors, such as lower water tables caused by aggressive gas drilling elsewhere in the fruitland formation or drought.
Isgar's bill has already won Senate approval.
Yesterday, Roberts won approval in House Agriculture Committee, saying the gas industry is vital to Southwest Colorado's economy.
ROBERTS: I REALLY APPRECIATE THEIR EFFORTS TO MONITOR AND MITIGATE THE IMPACTS THAT THEY HAVE. AS YOU MAY KNOW, ARCHULETA COUNTY, OR YOU MAY NOT KNOW, HAD A 40-PERCENT, 48-PERCENT POPULATION INCREASE IN THE LAST CENSUS. WE HAVE TREMENDOUS GROWTH OCCURING DOWN IN OUR CORNER OF THE STATE, WE NEED TO PEACEFULLY CO-EXIST WITH INDUSTRY AS THEY HAVE MAXIMIZED THEIR PRODUCTION OUT OF THE CORNER OF THE STATE AND I THINK THIS STUDY WILL HELP US DO THAT.
The measure Roberts and Isgar have sponsored would set aside almost 5-million dollars, through an increased mill levy on oil and gas producers in La Plata, Archuleta and ten other Colorado Counties.
Three million would fund a COGCC study the of the best ways to mitigate gas seepage in La Plata County.
That would, perhaps, clear the way for more wells to be drilled closer to the outcrop.
Another 1.5-million dollars would go to install wells to monitor seepage along the outcrop in Archuleta County, where fewer gas wells have been drilled, but production is expected to increase.
Almost 3.4-million dollars has been spent since 1993 by the industry addressing the gas seepage problem.
Jack Rigg, a Denver spokesman for BP, the biggest gas producer in La Plata County, voiced support for the bill.
RIGG: WE NEED AN OBJECTIVE EVALUATION OF HOW YOU GO ABOUT ADDRESSING THIS PARTICULAR PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY ISSUE, AND HAVING THE COMMISSION DO IT, WE BELIEVE, WILL PROVIDE THAT OBJECTIVE INFORMATION THAT THE PUBLIC REALLY WANTS.
The various studies, if they win final legislative approval, would take several years to complete.
From KSUT, Four Corners Public Radio, I'm Victor Locke.
© Copyright 2017, ksut